Following lawsuit, LIC real estate company gets restraining order against competitor over poaching

modern spaces
Photo via Facebook/ModernSpaces

A well-known Long Island City real estate firm won a victory in court against a competing New York-based company.

In June, Modern Spaces called on the Supreme Court to take action against real estate technology company Compass from stealing their business “through the unlawful misappropriation of [the] Plaintiff’s trade secrets,” which QNS reported on in February. As a result, the company asked for compensation for damages that were incurred, as well as a restraining order against Compass.

Modern Spaces was founded in 2008 by its CEO Eric Benaim; Compass was founded in 2012 by Ori Allon and Robert Reffkin.

According to the complaint, Jessica Meis had worked for Modern Spaces for many years before she “terminated her relationship with Modern Spaces” in January 2018. Thereafter, the company claimed, Meis emailed their proprietary information to her personal email, including lists of real estate buyers and sellers.

The lawsuit detailed that Compass had allegedly encouraged Meis to “misappropriate” the proprietary information and trade secrets that she stole for the purposes of “its own financial gain.”

Modern Spaces said that they “seek to recover damages” for several things, including business that was improperly diverted to Compass using these tactics, misappropriation of trade secrets under state and federal law, “unlawful interference with Modern Spaces exclusive listing agreements” and damage to public reputation and goodwill.

In addition, the real estate firm was granted a temporary restraining order, preliminary injunction and final injunction to prevent Compass from poaching and exploiting Modern Spaces’ information and put “an immediate halt to the substantial and irreparable harm and damages the defendants have caused and continue to cause.”

Compensatory damages to Modern Spaces are to be determined at trial.