Guardian v. Glass America Battle Continues in Michigan
July 9, 2012

by Katie O'Mara,

The court battle between Guardian Auto Glass and Glass America continues in an Eastern Michigan courthouse. The company has asked the court to hold the defendant Kenneth Staples in contempt of court for failing to appear at a recent hearing. In return, Staples has filed opposition stating that key information was kept from his lawyers which prevented him from providing documentation about change of venue to the court. A Virginia court recently denied Guardian Auto Glass’ motion to dismiss the suit filed by Glass America over a non-competition agreement regarding Staples' employment. The court did approve a motion to stay while the legal battle continues in Michigan.

Robert Staples signed an “Invention, Disclosure, Confidentiality and Non-Competition Agreement” with Guardian Auto Glass in November of 2010. According to Staples’ petition for declaratory judgment in the Virginia case, he “left Guardian Glass because he became increasingly uncomfortable with certain practices of the respondent which he believed to be unethical and possibly unlawful.”

Staples later accepted employment at a Glass America location in Fairfax, Va., which is within a 100 mile radius of the Guardian location where he was employed. Staples and Glass America received a letter from Guardian’s attorney requesting “enforcement of the provisions of the non-competition agreement” and warning of impending legal action in Michigan.

“Plaintiff’s counsel never provided Staples’ counsel with the order to show cause and her conduct evinces an intent to hide the show cause order from Staples’ counsel,” read documents filed by Staples in the Michigan case. “Staples contends that the Circuit Court reached that holding because he was never afforded the opportunity to present countervailing evidence and argument to the court.”

Staples is asking the court to transfer the case to the Virginia court and deny Guardian’s motion for contempt.

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