Is it legal for ACME Corp to enter a reciprocal agreement with another company to not hire from their workforce. This seems like it may have ramifications for price fixing the labor market.

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    You might need to be a bit more specific; this is against the law if Acme and Widgets Inc. are competitors, but a completely standard term if Widgets is a contractor of various varieties. Commented Aug 12, 2019 at 2:14
  • Is this a follow-up to this Workplace question?
    – David K
    Commented Aug 12, 2019 at 16:23

1 Answer 1


Among other stories via Google, some major companies lost a 2015 civil lawsuit brought by their employees: Apple, Google, others settle antipoaching lawsuit for $415 million - CNET

Filed by former employees of the companies involved, the lawsuit shed a light on the practice of some major tech industry players of allegedly working together to agree not to poach employees from each other. The affected employees had argued that such agreements limited their ability to rise up in the industry and stifled their attempts to earn higher salaries.

And the US DOJ prosecutes, too: No More No-Poach: The Antitrust Division Continues to Investigate and Prosecute “No-Poach” and Wage-Fixing Agreements:

The Antitrust Division protects labor markets and employees by actively pursuing investigations into so-called “no-poach” and wage-fixing agreements between employers. When companies agree not to hire or recruit one another’s employees, they are agreeing not to compete for those employees’ labor. The same rules apply when employers compete for talent in labor markets as when they compete to sell goods and services.

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    Just as a point of clarification, this would be different than an employment non-compete (or maybe non-disclosure) clause that would prevent you from leaving your current employer and going to work for a direct competitor for a reasonable period of time. These non-compete clauses are not universally legal, and are highly dependent on local jurisdiction's laws on whether they would be enforceable or not.
    – Milwrdfan
    Commented Aug 12, 2019 at 4:28
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    @Milwrdfan The OP did not specify non-competes, so I did not address them. You should comment on the question itself or add your own answer. Commented Aug 12, 2019 at 5:38
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    This question is tagged with Texas. What does a settlement from California have to do with it? The DOJ's policy also only covers naked no-poach offers, which is vastly different than what your small snippet suggests. This answer is presently incomplete and dangerous to rely on.
    – Michael W.
    Commented Aug 12, 2019 at 7:35
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    @MichaelW.: The DoJ is a federal agency. It has jurisdiction in Texas.
    – Kevin
    Commented Aug 12, 2019 at 16:08
  • @MichaelW. "This answer is presently incomplete and dangerous to rely on." 1) If you feel my answer is incomplete, write your own answer. 2) "Dangerous"? Read the sidebar; this site is not for legal advice and all takeaways are the risk of the reader; and and there is no attorney-client relationship here. If you really are a lawyer, as you claim to be, you'd know that. Commented Aug 13, 2019 at 16:13

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