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McDonald's Anti-Poaching Policy to be Litigated

03/22/2024

ollowing an August ruling by the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that revived the 2017 “no- poaching” lawsuit, an appeal to the Supreme Court of the United States was denied certiorari letting stand the lower court ruling that the case could proceed. The decision of the 7th Circuit apparently took into consideration the amicus brief submitted jointly by the U.S. Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission.

Since the original 2017 class action lawsuit, McDonald’s Corporation has ceased requiring franchisees to agree to no-poach agreements consistent with federal and some state laws and now adopted as a universal practice by QSRs.  The class alleged that the activities of McDonald’s in 2017 restricted competition for employees and was in violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act and Illinois laws.

The case arises from an employee who worked in a McDonald’s franchise in Florida from 2009 through 2015 and was denied employment by a competing franchisee on the basis of an agreed no-poaching policy.

 

If the lawsuit is successful, damages could exceed $2 billion given that the class comprises workers nationwide.