New Jersey’s Advisory Committee on Professional Ethics severely restricted a corporation’s ability to prevent its New Jersey in-house counsel from providing post-employment legal services to its competitors. In its July 10 opinion examining an employment agreement for in-house counsel that contained a restrictive covenant, the committee reinforced prior rulings that require in-house counsel practicing in New Jersey to observe the Rules of Professional Conduct and, in particular, the prohibition in RPC 5.6 regarding post-employment restrictions. See Op. 708, 15 N.J.L.J. 1446 (July 10, 2006).

The New Jersey Chapter of the Association of Corporate Counsel reports that there are over 700 in-house counsel in over 350 corporations in New Jersey. Despite the number of in-house counsel practicing in New Jersey, the Advisory Committee had never addressed the implications of restrictive covenants on in-house counsel. In fact, the committee had not opined on any restrictive covenants since 1969. Surprisingly, New Jersey courts had also not examined this issue. Thus, the July 10 opinion potentially has broad implications for restrictions contained in employment agreements between corporations and in-house counsel.

This content has been archived. It is available through our partners, LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law.

To view this content, please continue to their sites.

Not a Lexis Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Not a Bloomberg Law Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Why am I seeing this?

LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law are third party online distributors of the broad collection of current and archived versions of ALM's legal news publications. LexisNexis® and Bloomberg Law customers are able to access and use ALM's content, including content from the National Law Journal, The American Lawyer, Legaltech News, The New York Law Journal, and Corporate Counsel, as well as other sources of legal information.

For questions call 1-877-256-2472 or contact us at [email protected]