Jenner & Block

Eighth Circuit Reverses Grant of Summary Judgment against Client CRST

A Jenner & Block team won a significant appellate victory for client CRST Expedited, Inc., a freight company.  CRST had filed suit against one of its principal competitors, TransAm Trucking, alleging that TransAm was wrongfully recruiting and hiring CRST long-haul truck drivers who were under contract with CRST and who were subject to a non-compete clause.  CRST sued for intentional interference with contract and unjust enrichment.  The district court granted summary judgment against CRST and in favor of TransAm.  CRST then retained Jenner & Block to pursue an appeal to the Eighth Circuit.

On May 27, 2020, in a 2-1 decision, the Eighth Circuit reversed the district court’s grant of summary judgment and remanded for further proceedings as CRST had requested.  The court agreed with CRST that it had presented sufficient evidence that TransAm’s actions had caused CRST’s drivers not to perform their contract, so that the district court’s grant of summary judgment on the intentional interference claim had to be reversed.  And it rejected TransAm’s alternative argument for affirmance, concluding that the non-compete clauses in the CRST were not void as a matter of public policy.  Finally, the Eighth Circuit agreed that the district had erred in dismissing CRST’s unjust enrichment claim.

Partner Jessica Ring Amunson argued the case in the Eighth Circuit.  The firm briefing team included Partners John H. Mathias, Jr. and James T. Malysiak, Associate Alex Langlinais and former associate Ben Eidelson.  Partners Matthew S. Hellman, Lindsay C. Harrison and Ian Heath Gershengorn did a moot.  Senior Paralegals Cheryl Olson and Cheryl Kras, Legal Assistant Sheree Anyiam and Associate Manager of Docketing Services Tyler Edwards provided valuable support.