Brian Battaglia is a Partner at Bleakley, Bavol, Denman & Grace Law Firm in Tampa, Florida. Brian Battaglia has prosecuted non-compete agreements in the Tampa Bay area and around the State of Florida. Brian has represented large, medium and small companies, including publicly held companies in business litigation matters. If your company is in need of guidance, advice or litigation representation to enforce a non compete agreement or confidentiality agreement call Brian Battaglia at 727-420-8708 or 813-221-3759.
Section 542.335(1)(j), Florida Statutes, provides, in relevant part, that “[t]he violation of an enforceable restrictive covenant creates a presumption of irreparable injury to the person seeking enforcement of a restrictive covenant.” See also Litwinczuk v. Palm Beach Cardiovascular Clinic, L.C., 939 So. 2d 268, 271 (Fla. 4th DCA 2006) (noting that presumption is rebuttable). An enforceable restrictive covenant is one in which “the contractually specified restraint is reasonably necessary to protect [a] legitimate business interest.” Fla. Stat. § 542.335(1)(c). Section 542.335(1)(b) sets forth a non-exhaustive list of “legitimate business interests.” “Therefore, to benefit from the presumption of irreparable injury, the party seeking to enforce a covenant not to compete must show that the covenant protects a legitimate business interest as defined by section 542.335(1)(b) and that the covenant was violated.” TransUnion Risk & Alternative Data Sols., Inc. v. Reilly, 181 So. 3d 548, 550 (Fla. 4th DCA 2015). “Once the party seeking to enforce the covenant establishes that it is entitled to the presumption of irreparable injury, the statute shifts the burden to the respondent to establish the absence of injury.” Id.