Netflix hit by hiring rule?
November 27, 2019
A court case this week in Los Angeles Superior Court (20th Century Fox Film vs Netflix) looks like its final decision will rule against Netflix. The case revolves around allegations that Netflix is – and has been – hiring executives from Fox who were under contract.
Back in June the Court hear allegations that in 2016 Netflix had hired two senior executives from the then Murdoch-owned 20th Century Fox (Tara Flynn and Marcos Waltenberg) with the case hearing that Netflix had allegedly induced the pair to break their contracts and join the streaming service.
Netflix, in its counter-claim, argued in essence that the actual Fox contracts were illegal and in violation of California laws.
The judge in the case said he was minded to find most of Netflix’s arguments to be “unavailing”.
A tentative ruling, issued on November 25th, says the Court is leaning towards granting summary judgment in favour of Fox, and that Fox is entitled to injunctive relief. “There can be no dispute that Netflix will likely interfere with Fox’s valid Fixed-Term Employment Agreements in the future if the misconduct is not enjoined,” says the Court’s outline ruling.
However, the outline ruling does not include the two named staff. The Court will now – unless the parties pre-agree – hold a trial in January.
Netflix, in a post-hearing release, said: “Fox’s illegal contracts force employees to remain trapped in jobs they no longer wish to do and at salaries far below market rate. We will continue to fight to make sure that people who work in the entertainment industry have the same rights as virtually every other Californian and can make their own choices about where they work.”