When is an individual legally considered to be a ‘customer’ in terms of non-solicitation contract?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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When is an individual legally considered to be a ‘customer’ in terms of non-solicitation contract?

I signed a non-solicitation contract with an Florida employer valid for 1 year after
leaving the company. I parted ways recently. It states ‘…you are not allowed to
directly or indirectly solicit or accept a solicitation for business from a
CUSTOMER of …x …within a 30 mile radius…’

1. If the company contacted other companies or individuals to market or attempt
to sell their services but never actually did any transaction or delivered any
service, and even though they might be recorded in the company’s internal
database, are they technically considered as a ‘customer of company x’ or are
they just potential customers?

2. If I am a recruiter, do I need to ask every company or candidate that I am
dealing with for within the next 1 year, if they have done business with company

3. If I would place a candidate at a company that company x whom I worked for
did business with, will that be an infringement on the non-solicitation contract?

Thanks answering my questions and for filling me regarding this matter.

Asked on February 14, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, Florida


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

A "customer" is someone who purchases--that is, actually buys or pays for--goods or services. So only someone who's bought something from your current employer would be a customer of theirs; simply being someone who the company marketed to or tried to sell to does not make them a customer.
In terms of the agreement, you can't try to get anyone who bought from your current employer do business with--i.e. purchase goods or services from--a new employer. Recruitment would seem to not fall under that restriction.

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