What Everybody’s Missing About the FTC’s Proposed Non-Compete Ban
Five Minute Law
by Zach Wolfe
1w ago
In the words of Joe Biden, the FTC’s proposed ban on employee non-competes is a big f***ing deal. Bear in mind, it is only a proposed rule, and it is sure to face constitutional challenges. I’m no con law scholar, but I have a hunch the conservative 6-3 majority on the Supreme Court is not going to be psyched about a Democratic administration sweeping aside state non-compete law with the stroke of an administrative pen. But just for grins, let’s put aside the original public meaning of the Sherman Act and assume the FTC’s proposed rule is enacted and survives legal challenges. On its face ..read more
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I Want to Quit my Job, But I Have a Non-Compete
Five Minute Law
by Zach Wolfe
1M ago
As I write this, it’s the most wonderful time of the year. For a non-compete lawyer, that is. Part of my law practice is counseling people who have signed non-competes with their employers. I’ve done this dozens of times in the past five years alone. And I’ve learned a lot about what’s important in such cases. I know what you’re thinking. “The most important thing is to hire a lawyer to review the non-compete!” I mean, yes, that’s a good idea, but that’s not what I’m talking about. Or you’re thinking “is the non-compete is enforceable?” Again, an important question. I covered it in my very fir ..read more
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Lessons Learned from 1 Year of Solo Law Practice
Five Minute Law
by Zach Wolfe
3M ago
I had big plans for my one-year solo law practice anniversary, which came on August 16, 2022. I had the perfect blog post planned to coincide with it. Unfortunately, I was too busy with client work to write the blog post in time. And that kind of tells you how the first year of Zach Wolfe Law Firm 2.0 went. Business development was largely a success. I mean, it could always be better, but I had no shortage of paying client work to do. The only problem I really had was keeping up with all the work. More about that later. Now that I’ve had a chance to catch up, I’m going to share the lessons I’v ..read more
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Does the TCPA apply to a petition for a pre-suit deposition?
Five Minute Law
by Zach Wolfe
6M ago
Is a petition a “petition”? That’s the question raised in the recent case Florez v. Olibas, No. 08-19-00302-CV (Tex. App.—El Paso July 26, 2022, no pet. h.). Let me explain. The Texas Citizens Participation Act (the “TCPA”) is the Texas “anti-SLAPP” statute. I used to write a lot of blog posts about the TCPA, and then I stopped when it became less relevant to my practice. You can read a recap at Shrinkage: TX Legislature and 5th Circuit Cut the TCPA Down to Size. In a nutshell, if the TCPA applies to a lawsuit, then it gives the defendant an opportunity to try to get the case dismissed for lac ..read more
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What Clients Need to Understand About Litigation
Five Minute Law
by Zach Wolfe
6M ago
Sometimes at the end of a lawsuit I’ll tell my client, “congratulations, you’ve earned your Masters in litigation!” Or sometimes, if it’s a long, complicated lawsuit, a Ph.D. Usually the client is not excited. I don’t understand this. Why aren’t they happy to learn so much about how litigation works? Oh, yeah. There’s the time, money, and energy they expended to win that knowledge. But what if you could learn all those lessons, just without the lawsuit part? That was the inspiration for this blog post. I’m going to tell you the things you need to know about litigation ahead of time. For free ..read more
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Groove Crimes: A Practicing Litigator and Amateur Musician Explains “This Song Sounds Like That Song” Lawsuits
Five Minute Law
by Zach Wolfe
6M ago
Before we get into copyright infringement, first let me do you a favor. If you haven’t watched the video of Weird Al Yankovic’s “Word Crimes,” you have to check it out on YouTube. Weird Al has been churning out great song parodies since the 80s, but Word Crimes may be his magnum opus. It’s so good. Word Crimes is a parody of “Blurred Lines,” a song by Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams that generated controversy from the start. First there was the music video, which was a little, uh . . . PG-13? Then people started scrutinizing the cringey lyrics. And all of that was before the famous (or infa ..read more
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What is the right measure of damages for breaking a non-compete?
Five Minute Law
by Zach Wolfe
7M ago
Checking in on our favorite non-compete fact pattern You might be wondering what happened to our friend Dawn Davis. Well, with the housing market booming, the window business is doing well. Dawn just had her best year of sales at Paula Payne Windows. But Dawn felt like she wasn’t getting a big enough cut of the profits. So she jumped ship and went to work for Real Cheap Windows. Trouble is, Dawn had a two-year non-compete with Payne, and Payne sued, asking for an injunction and damages. The judge denied the injunction, but the case is about to go to trial on the damages. Dawn admits violating ..read more
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A Juneteenth Lesson on Voting Rights
Five Minute Law
by Zach Wolfe
7M ago
Try This One Weird Trick for Denying the Right to Vote On this Juneteenth holiday, let me introduce you to Dr. Lonnie Smith. He was a dentist living in Houston’s Fifth Ward in the 1940s. Dr. Smith wanted to vote in the 1940 Democratic Party primary elections in Harris County. This was important, considering Democrats dominated Texas politics at the time, as they did in the other Southern states. The winners in the primary would effectively be the winners in the general election. But Dr. Smith could not vote in the primary for one simple reason: He was an African-American. See, the Democratic P ..read more
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Why Don’t I Have a Podcast?
Five Minute Law
by Zach Wolfe
11M ago
It seems like everybody has a podcast, including lawyers. So why don’t I have one? Believe me, I thought about it. I like interviewing people, and a podcast is a natural vehicle for the kind of “content marketing” I already do. But when I started to think seriously about doing a podcast, I realized there were two good reasons not to start one. First, doing a podcast takes time, and time is a precious resource. This is true for just about any practicing lawyer, but especially a lawyer with a solo practice. When I first went out on my own, I thought I would have all the time in the world for bus ..read more
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The Three Levels of Business Development for Lawyers
Five Minute Law
by Zach Wolfe
1y ago
Three levels? What is this, Wolfe, you trying to sell some kind of self-help seminar? No, you’ll see what I mean. But first, some background, and a disclaimer. The background is that this is my 200th blog post, so I wanted to write something that would help people. Also, this comes on the six-month anniversary of starting my solo law practice, Zach Wolfe Law Firm, where I focus on non-compete and trade secret law. So far it’s going well. I say there are two key components to a successful solo law practice: (1) bringing in business, and (2) everything else. Bringing in business is, of course, t ..read more
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