Your career path in Houston may allow you to climb the corporate ladder within a single organization. Then again, you may be forced to leave your current company if you want to seek a promotion. Doing so can be difficult, however, if your current employer says that you are limited in where you can work and who you can work for by the terms of a non-compete agreement. Several of those who have come to us here at The Kruckemeyer Law Firm seeking assistance were made to sign non-compete agreements as a condition of being hired on to a new company. The question that almost all of them have (and that you might also share) is to what extent such agreements are actually enforceable.
It may seem odd to some to try an legislate against unfair competition between business in Houston. As you know, there is already a natural competition between your company and your competitors, as you both are going for the same consumers. Refusing to compete may put your company in a disadvantageous position compared to the competition. The question when doesn’t competition become unfair? That is a question that has been asked to us here at The Kruckemeyer Law Firm by many business representatives in your position. Fortunately, Texas state law has defined it for you.
Maintaining an organization that is successful and is able to effectively advertise its brand in ways that allow it to build relationships with both investors and consumers, is a big part of operations for many Texas companies. Achieving goals of that nature require businesses to spend considerable time evaluating their methods of communication and how their efforts can be modified to forge the strongest and longest-lasting relationships between anyone associated with the company.
No business exists in a vacuum; there are always going to be competitors in your space. What sets you apart from your competitors in Houston are those elements that are unique to the service or products that you offer. Given the advantage they offer, it is reasonable to expect that such elements are protected by law. When companies like yours come to us here at The Kruckemeyer Law Firm asking what sort of legal recourse is available to them if and when such protections have been violated, they are comforted to know that there can be severe repercussions are available in cases of intellectual property theft.
If you have to ask a question regarding whether parties to a contract breached the terms in some way, then it is likely that they did. Most of the time, investigations show some type of breach.
When the term "intellectual property" gets thrown out, most in Houston might automatically assume it to refer to high-tech information valued only by providers in technology related sectors. In reality, however, the phrase is much more far-reaching. The World Intellectual Property Organization defines IP as "creations of the mind." Beyond inventions, this can include trademarks, patents and copyrighted materials. Designs and logos also fall into this category. Even something as simple as a geographical indicator that ties a reputation to a certain area (e.g., "Made in the U.S.A") can also be considered IP.