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 Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags business issuesU.S. Department of Justicepersonnelebaylegal

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

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

Essentials

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?