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Tom Shumate
Nashville, Tennessee
Nashville, Tennessee Non-Compete and Business Interference Law Attorney
Interests: Helping clients in Nashville and around Tennessee resolve non-compete and business tort disputes
Recent Activity
Given these complexities and the 3-year statute of limitations, parties who have been injured by a third-party’s inducement of a breach of contract or have been accused of doing so should act quickly to preserve their rights or defenses and retain counsel to navigate them through the intricacies of prosecuting or defending these common law and statutory claims. Continue reading
Because the inquiry under the CFAA now addresses what information employees may obtain, not how they may use the information, employers should think strategically about how employees may potentially misuse information before they are permitted access. Conversely, employees should remain aware of how their use of company information may coincide with their employment agreement or violate state or federal laws such as those involving the breach of their duty of loyalty to their employer or misappropriation of trade secrets, even if such use no longer violates the CFAA. Continue reading
The impact of the pandemic on the U.S. workforce is mind-numbing. During the week of March 21 alone, 3.3 million Americans applied for unemployment, which shattered the previous national one-week filing record.[1] Many of those who are newly unemployed are... Continue reading
In February 2017, in Edwards v. Urosite Partners, 2017 WL 1192109, No. M2016–01161–COA–R3–CV (Tenn. Ct. App. March 30, 2017), the Tennessee Court of Appeals ruled that a partnership had the right to redeem the shares of a former partner who... Continue reading
Davis v. Johnstone Group, Inc. involved a battle between two appraisal firms for the services of one John Jason Davis. Mr. Davis was hired by Johnstone Group, Inc. (“JCI”) in 1998 as a real estate appraiser trainee. JCI required Mr.... Continue reading
The Tennessee Court of Appeals recently issued a ruling in John Hammer v. Southeast Resource Group, Inc., et al, which was appealed from the Chancery Court for Williamson County. The Plaintiff, John Hammer, founded a limited liability company called Action... Continue reading
The Knoxville News Sentinel published a good article by attorney Chris McCarty regarding the enforceability of non-compete agreements in Tennessee. Courts disfavor them but will enforce them if they are reasonable. While the article discusses the reasonableness of time and... Continue reading
In Commil USA, LLC v. Cisco Systems, Inc., 2015 WL 2456617, *9 (U.S. March 31, 2015), a patent infringement action, the United States Supreme Court discussed the rule that ignorance of the law is no defense. In doing so, it... Continue reading
I recently mediated a trade secret / non-compete dispute in Memphis. We used J. Brook Lathram as our mediator. If you are looking for a mediator in trade secret or business dispute in the Memphis area, you will be hard... Continue reading
In McCord v. HCA Health Services of Tennessee, Inc., 2015 WL 1914634 (Tenn. Ct. App. April 27, 2015), the Court of Appeals reaffirmed that an allegedly defamatory statement may also constitute the basis for a claim of intentional interference with... Continue reading
I wrote recently about a blog post suggesting that the enforceability of employee noncompetes be tied to CEO compensation. Well now I'm going to write about a law review article regarding CEO noncompetes. But first, I want to thank attorney... Continue reading
Eric Ostroff raises some good points in his article, "Sometimes, A Non-Solicitation Agreement Is Enough" Courts are more likely to enforce a non-disclosure agreement than a non-solicitation agreement. And they are more likely to enforce a non-solicitation agreement than a... Continue reading
Check out Donna Ballman's blog post about tying the enforceability of noncompetes to CEO pay. While I don't agree with her proposal, it's an interesting read given the broader use of noncompetes these days. Continue reading
Sounds like the scrutiny of non-competition agreements for lower-wage workers is picking up steam with the feds. You can read more about the possible involvement of the FTC and DOL here. Continue reading
Nike sued three former designers who allegedly used its trade secrets to broker employment deals with Addidas. I suspect Nike will rely on the inevitable disclosure doctrine even if it cannot establish that the designers misappropriated its trade secrets. Addidas... Continue reading
The December issue of the Tennessee Bar Journal contains an article by William Rutchow (who represents management) about the Tennessee Uniform Trade Secrets Act. The article is entitled, "Employer Protection of Confidential Business Information in Tennessee." It identifies the following... Continue reading
Jimmy John's makes low wage workers sign two-year non-competes. Their sandwiches are good but not that good. Continue reading
Tom Shumate has shared their blog Tom Shumate's Tennessee Non-Compete Law Blog
Sep 22, 2014
Interesting article from The New York Times regarding the national trend of employers using non-compete agreements in a broader range of industries, including hairstylists and camp counselors. Noncompete Clauses Increasingly Pop Up in Array of Jobs I'm seeing this trend... Continue reading
[By Maxdelord (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons] Some believe that non-competes will only be enforced when the former employee worked in an industry involving access to "high-tech" information, such as those working in the medical, manufacturing, and computer... Continue reading
I want to thank M. Lee Smith Publishers for inviting me to speak last week on "Intentional Interference with Business Relationships in Tennessee: An Overview, Update, and Litigation Tips." The webinar agenda included: Tennessee’s adoption of the tort of interference... Continue reading
The Winter 2009/2010 edition of Legal Strategy Review included an article by Jonathan Ball and Paul Griffin entitled, "Unlawful competition: is your data safe?" That article discussed "the rules of redress in England and Wales should ex-employees use data unlawfully."... Continue reading
Tom Shumate is now following The Typepad Team
Mar 15, 2010