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Ask Jo C. Your Own Question
Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 31300
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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Freelance work

Customer Question

Hi I'm a freelance graphic designer who works on an ad hoc basis for a marketing specialist.

I have been approached by a former client of hers to do some work for the company he has just moved to. I do not have a contract.  

 

My boss says she owns the customer , so I cannot work directly for her customer even though he is now at a different organisation which has not used her company.

Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Hi.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
Thanks for your interest in me but it is not really my area.
I will opt out for others.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thank you anyway Jo and for getting back to me

Expert:  Alex J. replied 2 years ago.
Hi,
Thank you for your question and welcome.
My name is ***** ***** I will assist you.
When this lady says she "owns" the customer - do you mean she is the shareholder of it?
If you are freelance and do not have a contract I presume you have not signed any non compete restrictions?
Kind regards
AJ
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

'Owning the customer' to her does not mean shareholder. She means she has spent quite a bit on advertising and lead generation.

As there is no contract there are no non compete restrictions written down - and therefore not signed.

Her view is that even if a former customer - or any contact of customer or former customer - were to contact me on my own website for work anywhere across the UK that it goes through her company.

I also offer some 'commissioning design' training - which she doesn't - and also says that any approach made to me (through my social media/ web) where the lead can be traced to her lead generation work - is her customer.

Expert:  Alex J. replied 2 years ago.
Hi
Thank you.
I have received this I am away from my computer at the moment but will prepare a response and revert to you over the weekend of that is ok?
Kind regards
AJ
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Very much appreciated - thank you.

Expert:  Alex J. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you.
Kind regards
AJ
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

You are welcome

Best wishes

Expert:  Alex J. replied 2 years ago.
Hi,
Thank you.
If you do not have a contract with your "boss" and the customer has contacted you independently to do some new work, then your boss cannot stop you if there is no contract.
On this basis do you want to carrying on working for your "boss"? Because if you accept this work without her permission it may cause a break down in the relationship.
Kind regards
AJ
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thank you that is very helpful.

Trying the place to score you very highly but can't find it on the system