RTC Indus., Inc. v. Haddon, No. 06 C 5734, 2007 WL 2743583 (N.D. Ill. Sep. 10, 2007) (Grady, J.).
Judge Grady denied defendant’s Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(c) motion for judgment on the pleadings. The Court held that plaintiff’s breach of fiduciary duty claim was not preempted by the Illinois Trade Secret Act. Plaintiff alleged that defendant (plaintiff’s employee) violated his fiduciary duty to plaintiff (his employer at the time) by disclosing to third party DCI Marketing (“DCI”) that a DCI employee had accepted an offer to work for plaintiff. The Court held that the alleged acts would breach defendant’s fiduciary duty regardless of whether the hiring decision was confidential. The breach of fiduciary duty claim, therefore, was not preempted.
The Court also held that the non-complete clause defendant signed as a condition of employment was enforceable even though it lacked a geographic restriction. There was a two year time restriction and an “activity” restriction – defendant was only prevented from taking a job with a competitor that would either result in actual or threatened use of plaintiff’s confidential information.