Details about the communication surfaced in a court filing for a civil lawsuit that five workers are bringing against Apple, Google, Intel and others. The case alleges that the companies conspired to keep wages low and eliminate competition.
In 2007, Jobs proposed a no-hire agreement to then Palm CEO Edward Colligan.
"Mr. Jobs also suggested that if Palm did not agree to such an arrangement, Palm could face lawsuits alleging infringement of Apple's many patents," Colligan said in the statement.
Colligan reportedly told Jobs that the plan was "likely illegal" and that the company wasn't "intimidated" by the threat.
"If you choose the litigation route, we can respond with our own claims based on patent assets, but I don't think litigation is the answer," he said.