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Atmel Corp. v. Vitesse Semiconductor Corp.

Colorado Court of Appeals
30 P. 3d 789 (2001)


Facts

Atmel Corporation (Atmel) (plaintiff), a semiconductor company in Colorado Springs, Colorado, filed suit against former employees Robert L. West, Patrick H. Jenkins, and Lattie Alejo (defendants) as well as Vitesse Semiconductor Corporation (Vitesse) (defendant), seeking injunctive relief to prohibit the individual defendants and Vitesse from “raiding” Atmel’s work force. Shortly after leaving Atmel for Vitesse, the individual employees provided Vitesse with names of other Atmel employees the company may want to hire. Atmel argues this violated the “non-solicitation” clause in the employment contract between the individual employees and Atmel which provided that an Atmel employee would not, for a period of one year following the termination of the employment relationship, either directly or indirectly, solicit, recruit, or attempt to persuade any person to terminate his or her employment with Atmel. The trial court granted Atmel’s request for an injunction and prohibited the individual defendants from soliciting or recruiting Atmel’s current employees to work for Vitesse. Additionally, the trial court’s order prevented Atmel employees from initiating contact with Vitesse regarding employment possibilities. Defendants appealed. 

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Holding and Reasoning (Metzger, J.)

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