In a recent decision in the matter Alliance Bernstein, L.P. v. William Clements, the Supreme Court of the State of New York, New York County (Justice Louis B. York), enjoined a former employee of AllianceBernstein, L.P. (“AllianceBernstein”) from working for a competitor for 60 days, pursuant to a provision in an agreement requiring the individual to provide 60 days notice of his intention to resign. Although the original 60 days extending from the date of his resignation had already elapsed, the Court in effect granted a new 60 day period of non-competition, because the individual had started working for the competitor immediately upon his resignation from AllianceBernstein.
The facts as set forth in the decision were that the defendant individual, a California resident, had no experience in the securities industry when first hired, but AllianceBernstein gave him extensive training and paid for his registration with various securities exchanges. He then became a successful financial advisor. In 2009, AllianceBernstein and the defendant entered into an extensive incentive plan, in which defendant promised (a) to give 60 days notice of his resignation, (b) not to solicit clients or employees of AllianceBernstein during those 60 days, and (c) to keep permanently the confidentiality of AllianceBernstein’s trade secrets and confidential information.