Unfair Competition

The business world can be ruthless, but there are certain practices that state and federal laws classify as being unfair and—more importantly—illegal. 

Are you being accused of unfair business practices? If so, qualified legal counsel is a must.

Hoge Law Firm in San Diego can get you the legal representation you need to protect your rights and allow your business to thrive.

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Hoge Law Firm Can Connect You With Qualified Counsel

From trade secret misappropriation to false advertising, many practices can create unfair competition. In California, you likely have four years from the date of the alleged action, but in every case of unfair competition, consulting an attorney as soon as possible is the very best course of action.

It could also be the case that you are being accused of creating unfair competition, but haven't violated any state or federal laws. For example, you may be accused of stealing a trade secret that is lawfully yours. The necessary proof of ownership won't necessarily be easy to establish, which is why you need an attorney in your corner as soon as possible.

For more than 30 years, businesses and individuals throughout Greater San Diego have relied on award-winning attorney Charlie Hoge when unfair competition threatens their success. Hoge Law Firm can place you in touch with an attorney with a track record of helping clients like you navigate these often complex matters. Take the first step toward protecting yourself and your business today. Write to us or call:

Charlie Hoge
Hoge Law Firm can place you in touch with an attorney with a track record of helping clients like you navigate these often complex matters.

California's Unfair Competition Law

California's Unfair Competition Law borrows heavily from the Federal Trade Commission Act, which serves to protect both competitors and consumers. It is a broadly written outline of definitions of unfair business practices, including:

1. An unlawful business act or practice
2. An unfair business act or practice
3. A fraudulent business act or practice
4. Unfair, deceptive, untrue, or misleading advertising

Because this and other laws governing trade are broadly written, you have everything to gain by hiring an attorney who is experienced in business law and can gather and present the evidence necessary to make your position understood and compelling. Hoge Law Firm has been able to serve San Diego for decades because of our success on behalf of businesses facing unfair competition, as well as those accused of deceptive or otherwise unlawful business practices. The firm can connect you with an attorney whose understanding of unfair competition law can help assert your rights and allow you to succeed in litigation.

Examples of Unfair Competition

Woman sneaking photos of work documents

Trade Secret Misappropriation

Some assets benefit businesses because they are confidential. If it can be proven that the trade secret truly belongs to a company and they are making efforts to keep it secret, state and federal laws provide certain protections. For example, it can be unlawful to hack into a company's databases to access a trade secret, publish a trade secret you know was stolen, or disclose a secret when you are under contract to keep it confidential. Meanwhile, those accused of misappropriation may own the trade secret, or the trade secret may be publicly known. In either case, it pays to consult a lawyer.

Person signing a patent application

Other Intellectual Property Infringement

Trade secrets are just one kind of intellectual property. State and federal laws also provide protections for copyrights, trademarks, and patents. Although each of these classifications was distinguished to provide protections for different types of intellectual property, they all serve the same fundamental purpose: giving the owner legal recourse if another party tries to use the intellectual property for their own gain. Our San Diego Firm has decades of experience in helping plaintiffs and defendants navigate the complex and often broadly defined laws pertaining to intellectual property.

Girl holding up phone with

False Advertising

False claims on the part of a business are harmful to consumers, businesses, and trade in general. California courts evaluate an ad's images, language, format and packaging to determine if it creates unfair competition. But the courts also require a consumer to demonstrate that they were deceived by the ad and suffered resulting losses. Whether your business has been affected by false claims aimed at consumers, or you have been accused of making a false claim, an attorney is essential to building a compelling case.

Non-compete agreement

Breach of NCA

Some employers ask workers to sign noncompete agreements (NCA) that can keep them from taking a job with a competitor or starting their own business. Historically, it has been very difficult to enforce NCAs in California. Senate Bill 699 took effect on January 1, 2024, making it even more difficult to enforce NCAs and giving employees greater opportunities to challenge NCAs. Our San Diego firm is here to help both employers and employees protect their interests when it comes to NCAs, the assets they are created to protect, and related litigation.

person signing an NDA

Breach of NDA

Nondisclosure agreements (NDAs) between employers and employees are a common means of making sure that a trade secret remains a secret. Their scope can go beyond providing recourse when an employee discloses a secret to another party. Depending on the contract, using a private computer to do work on an unsecured network in a public place could also be considered a breach. Hoge Law Firm can help you take action if an employee breaches their NDA. Our firm can also provide defense for employees accused of violating an NDA.

Why Reach Out to Hoge Law Firm?

Decades In Practice

Charles T. Hoge has provided legal counsel to businesses for more than 30 years. He served as the managing partner at Post Kirby Noonan & Sweat (known after 2005 as Kirby Noonan Lance & Hoge LLP) for 14 years. 


When it comes to litigation regarding deceptive business practices and other issues, communication with your lawyer is paramount. Hoge Law Firm will connect you with an attorney who provides clear explanations and straightforward advice.


Charlie Hoge has been named a Super Lawyer every year since the distinction was created. Since the beginning of his career, he has received a Martindale-Hubbell AV rating in recognition of his skill, integrity, and professional excellence.

Are you being accused of unfair business practices? Hoge Law Firm can get you the legal representation you need.

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