No-poaching Agreements: Do Not Pass Go, Do Not Collect $200, Go Directly to Jail

No-poaching Agreements: Do Not Pass Go, Do Not Collect $200, Go Directly to Jail

Perhaps not directly to jail, but the U.S. Department of Justice has come out aggressively warning talent acquisition and human resources professionals about the risk of criminal prosecution arising from what the government considers to be non-poach agreements, where competitors agree not to hire employees from the other or otherwise collaborate to establish or restrict wages and benefits. The DOJ’s position is that these types of agreements violate antitrust laws by restricting competition for employees and depressing wages and benefits that employees might otherwise obtain in a competitive marketplace.