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Ex-Employee Asks Ninth Circuit To Revive HP No Poach Claims

 |  November 5, 2020

A former HP employee has asked the Ninth Circuit to revive allegations that a “no poach” agreement prevented fired employees from finding new work with a 3D printing rival after age-related layoffs, reported Bloomberg Law.

Judge Gonzalo P. Curiel dismissed those antitrust claims in August, saying the plaintiff’s “opaque allegations” were “either insufficient or independently explained by rational business decisions” rather than collusion.

The claims were part of a lawsuit that also accuses HP of discriminating against older workers during a round of layoffs starting in late 2015.

According to the Complaint, in 2015, HP’s then CEO, Meg Whitman explained that HP was aggressively seeking to replace older employees with younger employees. On the topic, some of Whitman’s comments include, but are not limited to:

“We need to return to a labor pyramid that really looks like a triangle where you have a lot of early career people who bring a lot of knowledge who you’re training to move up through your organization, and then people fall out either from a performance perspective or whatever.”

HP is also alleged to have ensured its current or former employees could not work for one of its major competitors in its printer business by entering into a “no poach” agreement with 3D Systems, whereby both companies would secretly agree not to hire the other companies’ employees.

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