Title company to pay $1M for illegal no-poach employment agreements

July 13, 2023 Rob Abruzzese
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Attorney General Letitia James made significant strides in ending harmful labor practices when she secured a victory against Kensington Vanguard National Land Services, LLC, one of the country’s largest independent title insurance agencies.

Kensington was found guilty of engaging in illegal “no-poach” agreements, which stifle competition and adversely affect workers’ wages and opportunities.

The Office of the Attorney General (OAG) found that Kensington and its underwriters entered into illegal no-poach agreements, a tactic where companies pledge not to solicit each other’s employees, reducing competition. This investigation culminated in a settlement announced today that requires Kensington to terminate all existing no-poach agreements, pay $1 million to the state, and cooperate with the OAG’s ongoing investigations into the industry.

This agreement is a significant accomplishment, raising the total amount secured by Attorney General James from title insurance companies for illegal no-poach agreements to $9.25 million.

“Hard work and experience in any career is supposed to help employees grow and achieve better wages and opportunities,” said Attorney General James. “When companies illegally collude and make no-poach agreements, they hold workers back. No-poach agreements have become a systemic problem in the title insurance industry, and that’s why my office is focused on rooting out this unacceptable practice to protect workers.”

The no-poach agreement between Kensington and its underwriters prevented competitors in the labor market from competing for employees based on salaries, benefits and career opportunities, effectively reducing these career opportunities and wages.

 


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