Judge Orders Injunction Against Taking Better Paying Job

Today in “Holy Fucking Shit, How is This Legal?”

-Hospital underpays employees.
-Employee gets job at different hospital and tells coworkers how much the new place is paying.
-Hospital refuses to make competitive salary offer.
-Six more employees go get jobs there.

Bear in mind that these are non-contracted employees in an AT WILL EMPLOYMENT state.

How are people literally not rioting and murdering bosses over this?


It’s the free market at work! The bosses are free to do whatever they like! /s


Working link


Thanks. Looks like it got cut off. Fixed.


Shocking! The serfs’ allegiance to their lord is ordained by God, not something they can pick up at a whim and transfer to a different manor. That’s how society breaks down. A few whippings and a punitive tax would seem to be in order. /s


Has anyone had better luck than I have finding the actual judgement? I’m…confused…by the potential legal basis for this.


obviously it is the “invisible hand of the free market” at work overtime.


I can’t find anything beyond a claim of community harm.
I’m understand theracare could lose its trauma care level if the hospital is unable to retain enough staff. But the hospital had a chance to keep those employees and decided not to. So I am left thinking under what law or reasoning is the judge doing this. Seriously, WTF


According to the article, there isn’t an actual judgment; the judge basically granted temporary stay until a longer hearing could be scheduled.

But it’s still a shit ruling.


I realize that this would be applying little people rules upward rather than downward; but if you are going to use a ‘claim of community harm’ basis; wouldn’t an injunction forcing the hospital to make competitive counteroffers to retain any staff needed to meet whatever level of service it sets out to provide be as or more reasonable than an injunction forcing the employees to just suck it up?


Yeah I think this isn’t “keep working there forever” but more like “everyone stand down until we can hear the all facts.”

Which is still stupid and wrong.


That’s true; I’m just unclear on what the longer hearing is supposed to be about: a temporary stay certainly has a lower standard of proof: you just need to have something plausible enough to constitute a case during the actual hearing, rather than winning that case; but I’m not sure what there will be to talk about at the hearing proper.


Almost the same, kind of…

My wife worked as a district manager for a large franchisee for close to 20 years. She had a reputation in that particular fast food brand. When she was no longer happy with her employer she put the feelers out. Lots of interest but…

She had no contracts with anyone, but, the franchisee contract with the mother ship said they could not hire employees from other franchisees unless their current employer okayed it.


Went to a lawyer who said making her a party to their contract without her knowing or consenting was a problem, however, fighting it would be a losing battle.

Every time I hear someone say if people want more money they should just find a better paying job I get really angry because they all believe it’s just that easy. It’s damn near impossible when these employers all conspire together to keep people poor.

I kind of get the problem with this case but there is a simple solution, make a counter offer to keep your employees. It should never have ended up in court and the judge should never heard it. There are no contracts or agreements between two separate businesses.

The ruling should have told hospital one to make a counter offer or kiss the employees and their trauma center goodbye.

I also wonder if stories like this would ever incentivize non maskers/anti vaxxers to stand up and take notice. If they don’t stop flooding the hospitals they’re going to lose community health centers. Yeah, probablly not.


In an at-will state like CA, that would be a restraint of trade. You can always hop to another job with rival company. Also, to allow both hospitals to come to an agreement seems to encourage a certain collusion by management in the face of acceptable labor practices. (I thought that Silicon Valley tech companies got slapped over something like this.)

But I also wonder if a CA judge would also be fooled by such scary lawyer words during a pandemic?


Are the employees forbidden to start the new job (as mentioned in the article) or to leave the old one.
Because if it is the former, the injunction itself contributes to the community harm, as the employees are probably not going back to the old job.

An unrelated question:
Is it common for people to start working at the new job immediately after leaving the old one without taking a few days to rest/decompress?


Only in instances when one’s landlord, utility companies, etc. do not also allow those few days of rest.


In this case the workers are part of a specialized group, and i guess they had a good salary, despite the bad employer.
It seems strange to me that even people like that are living paycheck to paycheck and cannot take a small income hit, even considering that they will have a higher salary in the new job to help compensate it.

The article is a bit vague on specifics, but I’m guessing it’s an order to prevent the rival hospital from hiring the employees, not a prohibition against the employees leaving and working at a different hospital. (It might functionally amount to the same thing if their only desire is to work at that one rival hospital, but legally I think it is different. IANAL, though. So, dunno.)


I think the concern is that there’s no guarantee they will get that job and the higher salary until they actually start.

Employment instability is hard to navigate.


It is my understanding that that is in fact the basis of the legal action (the first hospital accused the second of “poaching their staff”), and that the specific injunction here is just a temporary stay until the facts of that suit can be presented (on Monday).

So, in terms of specifics, this is not a huge thing- Party A accuses Party B of wrongdoing, judge orders everyone to hold up for a few days until they can present evidence. HOWEVER, in context, this is so absolutely WHAT THE FUCKING SHIT that it’s hard to imagine what could have possibly been going through the judge’s mind- Because the context absolutely is “are employees in an at will employment state allowed to go work for a competitor?”