LARO MAINTENANCE CORP v. CULKIN

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Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Second Department, New York.

LARO MAINTENANCE CORP., et al., Respondents, v. John J. CULKIN, et al., Appellants.

Decided: November 30, 1998

COPERTINO, J.P., SULLIVAN, KRAUSMAN and FLORIO, JJ. Scher & Scher, P.C., Great Neck, N.Y. (Robert A. Scher and Daniel J. Scher of counsel), for appellants. Bracken & Margolin, LLP, Islandia, N.Y. (Linda U. Margolin of counsel), for respondents.

In an action, inter alia, for injunctive relief, the defendants appeal from an order of the Supreme Court, Suffolk County (Dunn, J.), dated January 2, 1998, which, after a hearing, granted the plaintiffs' motion for a preliminary injunction prohibiting them from contacting or soliciting certain customers of the plaintiffs pending the resolution of the action.

ORDERED that the order is affirmed, with costs.

 In order to obtain preliminary injunctive relief, the movant must demonstrate a likelihood of ultimate success on the merits, irreparable harm in the absence of the injunction, and a balancing of the equities in its favor (see, Aetna Ins. Co. v. Capasso, 75 N.Y.2d 860, 552 N.Y.S.2d 918, 552 N.E.2d 166;  W.T. Grant Co. v. Srogi, 52 N.Y.2d 496, 438 N.Y.S.2d 761, 420 N.E.2d 953;  Consolidated Edison Co. of N.Y. v. Gallagher, 244 A.D.2d 447, 664 N.Y.S.2d 125).   The Supreme Court correctly determined that the plaintiffs, former employers of the individual defendants, met their burden in this case.   The plaintiffs came forward with strong evidence that (1) the individual defendants misappropriated and utilized proprietary information and trade secrets in competing with the plaintiffs (cf., Ashland Mgt. v. Janien, 82 N.Y.2d 395, 604 N.Y.S.2d 912, 624 N.E.2d 1007;  Price Paper & Twine Co. v. Miller, 182 A.D.2d 748, 582 N.Y.S.2d 746), (2) the continued improper solicitation of their clients would result in irreparable harm (see generally, Tulchin Assocs. v. Vignola, 186 A.D.2d 183, 587 N.Y.S.2d 761), and (3) the failure to grant preliminary injunctive relief would cause greater injury to them than the imposition of the injunction would cause to the defendants (see generally, Klein, Wagner & Morris v. Lawrence A. Klein, P. C., 186 A.D.2d 631, 588 N.Y.S.2d 424).   Moreover, the defendants' contention that the preliminary injunction is overly broad lacks merit.   The preliminary injunction is reasonably limited in scope, since it temporarily prohibits the defendants from contacting or soliciting those customers of the plaintiffs who previously were served by the individual defendants when they were employed by the plaintiffs.

MEMORANDUM BY THE COURT.

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