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The round of firings at Tesla Motors that followed the departure of co-founder Martin Eberhard late in 2007 has resulted in yet another lawsuit for the company. This time litigation comes in the form of a class action suit from former employee David Vespremi for breach of contract, libel and slander. During his time with Tesla Vespremi held a number of positions including public relations director. The suit alleges that Tesla violated California labor laws, dealt with him and other employees in bad faith and made disparaging comments about him and other former employees. CEO Ze'ev Drori and Marketing VP Darry Siry about named in suit along with the company. The full filing with San Mateo Superior Court is available on line. Both Siry and Vespremi declined comment when contacted by ABG.

UPDATE: The class action component only refers to the arbitration and solicitation clauses in the employment agreement. The rest of Vespremi's suit only covers his own case.

[Source: San Mateo Court]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 5 Comments
      • 3 Months Ago
      Sounds like he's trying to work around the binding legal arbitration obligation that he signed onto when he started work there. I doubt that'll play well in the court.

      Perhaps the disgruntled ex-Tesla employees should get together and form their own company. Then they'd be able to actually prove whether they were right all along and just victims of spiteful management, or whether they really were dragging the company down. They'd certainly have a big edge-up -- knowing their competition inside and out, knowing the topic inside and out, what works and what doesn't, etc. And they wouldn't be burdened with legacy; they could use LiP, spinel, or titanate cells, for example, and make their car fast-charge capable.
        • 3 Months Ago
        Impossible, Tesla would just sue them like they sue everyone else, hoping to make a few bucks. Since they've lost all hope of doing it by selling cars.
      • 3 Months Ago
      I agree. All employees with technical knowledge will have signed a non-compete agreement when they were hired. If they started an electric car company they would very clearly be in violation of that and would almost certainly get reamed in court.
        • 3 Months Ago
        They also don't hold well in courts in places where they do have it. And in most cases, 99% of time companies don't cry fowl when an employee goes to a competitor. Companies that do pursue usually have bad management and big egos. I use to work for one. But when a judge has to decide between upholding a clause or letting an individual pursue his life, liberty and happiness, he will often favor the in alienable rights of man.

        • 3 Months Ago
        Actually, non-compete agreements are illegal in CA.