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Blood v. Columbus, US, Inc.

Superior Court of Delaware

August 10, 2017

BRIAN BLOOD, Plaintiff,
v.
COLUMBUS, US, INC., Defendant.

          Submitted: May 18, 2017

         Upon Plaintiffs Motion for Summary Judgment GRANTED IN PART, DENIED IN PART Upon Defendant's Cross-Motion for Summary Judgment GRANTED IN PART, DENIED IN PART

          Daniel C. Herr, Esq., Law Office of Daniel C. Herr LLC, Attorney for Brian Blood.

          Keri L. Morris-Johnston, Esq., Marshall, Dennehey, Warner, Coleman & Goggin, Attorneys for Columbus, US, Inc.

          OPINION

          THE HONORABLE MARY M. JOHNSTON, JUDGE.

         PROCEDURAL CONTEXT AND FACTUAL BACKGROUND

         This litigation raises breach of contract and violation of the Delaware Wage and Payment Collection Act[1] claims. Plaintiff Brian Blood ("Blood") filed this lawsuit against Defendant Columbus US, Inc. ("Columbus") on December 13, 2016.

         Blood was employed as a Vice President of Columbus from 2004 until 2015. Blood and Columbus entered into an employment agreement ("Contract") on January 1, 2004. The Contract was drafted solely by Columbus. The Contract contains a "Non-Competition Clause" in part A-10-11. Section 10.1 of this clause provides:

Towards the Company and Columbus, the VP undertakes in no manner or respect whatsoever, whether by themselves, as employees, as Board Members, as consultants or otherwise, to be engaged in or otherwise interested, whether directly or indirectly, financially or otherwise, in any business which is competing with the Company or Columbus's business, for a period of 12 months after their resignation.

(emphasis added).

         Section 10.2 states:

This undertaking not to compete shall be subject to all countries, where Columbus, including its subsidiaries and associated companies, its parent company or its subsidiaries, are doing business on the date of resignation.

(emphasis added).

         Section 10.3 states:

For purposes of this non-competition clause, the date of resignation shall be defined as the date when the VP ceases to receive his salary or any other form of compensation from the Company (except remunerations), regardless of whether ...

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