US court approves eBay settlement over no-hire agreement

EBay was charged with entering into an agreement with Intuit to limit competition for employees

A court in California has approved a settlement reached earlier this year between eBay and the U.S. Department of Justice over a deal the e-commerce company is said to have reached with Intuit not to hire each other's employees.

Under the settlement proposed in May and cleared Tuesday by District Judge Edward J. Davila of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, San Jose division, eBay is prevented for five years from entering into or maintaining agreements with other companies that restrain employee recruitment and hiring.

The settlement also prohibits "....pressuring any person in any way to refrain from hiring, soliciting, cold calling, recruiting, or otherwise competing for employees of the other person," according to the court order.

The DOJ had charged that senior executives and directors of eBay and Intuit entered into an agreement, beginning no later than 2006, that prevented each firm from recruiting employees from the other and that prohibited eBay from hiring Intuit employees that approached eBay.

California Attorney General Kamala Harris announced a related settlement in May with eBay, with the company agreeing to pay restitution and civil penalties of nearly US$3.8 million, including $300,000 to the state for the harm to the state's economy.

EBay could not be immediately reached for comment on the approval of the settlement.

The DOJ's Antitrust Division filed a civil antitrust lawsuit in September 2010 against Adobe Systems, Apple, Google, Intel, Intuit, and Pixar for antitrust violations arising from agreements that put each firm's employees off-limits to the other companies, with instructions to recruiters not to "cold call" these employees. It filed later in the year a similar lawsuit against Lucasfilm on similar charges of anticompetitive hiring practices. The DOJ settled both suits at time of filing the lawsuits. The lawsuit against eBay was filed in 2012.

The employees of the companies, however, held that the DOJ put an end to the allegedly illegal agreements, but the government was unable to compensate the victims of the conspiracy, which was the reason why they were filing a class action suit.

Judge Lucy H. Koh of the California court rejected last month a proposed settlement in the class-action lawsuit, observing that the $324.5 million amount being offered by remaining defendants Apple, Google, Intel and Adobe is too low. The other defendants have settled with the employees.

John Ribeiro covers outsourcing and general technology breaking news from India for The IDG News Service. Follow John on Twitter at @Johnribeiro. John's e-mail address is john_ribeiro@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags business issueslegalebaypersonnelU.S. Department of Justice

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John Ribeiro

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?