April 13—Former employees seeking to recover for Microsoft Corp.'s alleged participation in a conspiracy among high-tech companies not to recruit each other's employees failed to show fraudulent concealment or a continuing violation and thus saw their claims deleted by a federal district court.
The court denied Microsoft's request that the lawsuit be moved to the Western District of Washington, but granted a motion to dismiss after finding the plaintiffs' claims to be time-barred. The court also is involved with a related case with overlapping issues (In re High-Tech Employees Litigation, N.D. Cal., No. 11-cv-02509,.
Microsoft had relied on a forum selection clause in its employment agreements with the two former workers. However, the court found that the clauses cover only those disputes requiring interpretation of the contracts, which does not include the lawsuit.
Microsoft “has failed to show that plaintiffs' claims ‘cannot be adjudicated without analyzing whether the parties were in compliance with the contract'” or that any other private or public interest factors weigh in favor of transfer.
However, the company established that all the claims are subject to a four-year statute of limitations and began to accrue in 2007. As the court could not agree that either the ascertainable damages or continuing-violation exceptions apply, it granted the motion to dismiss, albeit without prejudice, as “amendment would not necessarily be futile.” The former employees can elect to file an amended complaint curing the deficiencies identified by this decision within 30 days, the court said.
To contact the reporter on this story: Tiffany Friesen Milone in Washington at email@example.com
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Sheldon B. Richman at firstname.lastname@example.org
All Bloomberg BNA treatises are available on standing order, which ensures you will always receive the most current edition of the book or supplement of the title you have ordered from Bloomberg BNA’s book division. As soon as a new supplement or edition is published (usually annually) for a title you’ve previously purchased and requested to be placed on standing order, we’ll ship it to you to review for 30 days without any obligation. During this period, you can either (a) honor the invoice and receive a 5% discount (in addition to any other discounts you may qualify for) off the then-current price of the update, plus shipping and handling or (b) return the book(s), in which case, your invoice will be cancelled upon receipt of the book(s). Call us for a prepaid UPS label for your return. It’s as simple and easy as that. Most importantly, standing orders mean you will never have to worry about the timeliness of the information you’re relying on. And, you may discontinue standing orders at any time by contacting us at 1.800.960.1220 or by sending an email to email@example.com.
Put me on standing order at a 5% discount off list price of all future updates, in addition to any other discounts I may quality for. (Returnable within 30 days.)
Notify me when updates are available (No standing order will be created).
This Bloomberg BNA report is available on standing order, which ensures you will all receive the latest edition. This report is updated annually and we will send you the latest edition once it has been published. By signing up for standing order you will never have to worry about the timeliness of the information you need. And, you may discontinue standing orders at any time by contacting us at 1.800.372.1033, option 5, or by sending us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Put me on standing order
Notify me when new releases are available (no standing order will be created)