Employers can sue a group of employees who conceal their intention to defect to a competitor, even if there are no restrictive covenants prohibiting competition. An employee is under a duty to tell his employer if he and other employees are together proposing to join a competitor.

Three employees breached their implied duty of fidelity by deliberately concealing from their employer the real possibility that all three would join a competitor. This was also a breach of the fiduciary duty binding the two more senior employees.

Twelve month non-compete covenants binding the senior employees as shareholders were also held to be enforceable. The covenants theoretically applied to junior employees (who were also shareholders), which would not be justified. However, the possibility of junior employees being shareholders was remote in reality and should not prejudice the enforceability against senior employees. (Kynixa v Hynes, HC)