Insurance company claims agent stole customers

John Suayan, Galveston Bureau Aug. 16, 2011, 3:49am

GALVESTON - Maxim Insurance Services Inc. has filed suit against a former employee in response to his apparent violation of a non-competition agreement, recent court documents say

In a lawsuit filed Aug. 1 in Galveston County District Court, Maxim accuses League City resident Andrew Grande of soliciting and transferring long term existing customer accounts to Highpoint Insurance Group LLC after he was terminated.

Highpoint is also a defendant in the case.

The suit points out that Maxim and Grande executed an employment agreement in July 2008.

Said agreement expressly provided that the costumers, insurance accounts and goodwill were Maxim's exclusive property and implemented a non-competition clause for Grande to abide by even after his termination.

The plaintiff terminated Grande last June 15.

It alleges the ex-agent, however, siphoned its business away within a month of his termination.

According to the original petition, Grande turned over Plumbing Ace Inc., BAH Group Inc. and KT Building Sources Inc.'s accounts to Highpoint.

"Highpoint intentionally induced Grande to breach the terms of the non-competition agreement and the employment agreement," the suit says.

"Highpoint assigned and/or credited the business secured in contravention of the employment agreement to Grande."

Consequently, the plaintiff seeks unspecified monetary damages and a jury trial.

The case has been assigned to Galveston County 56th District Court Judge Lonnie Cox.

Case No. 11-cv-1252

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