WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU BREAK A NON COMPETE AGREEMENT?
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A non-compete agreement is a contract that is between an employer and an employee. The signed agreement states that the employee agrees that he or she will not enter into a competition with the employer, either during the time of employment or afterwards. It prevents employees from entering professions or markets that are in direct competition with the employer.
There are a number of things that may happen if an employee does violate or breach a non-compete agreement. It can also be that nothing happens for the violation. It seems that non-compete agreements are not looked upon favorably by the courts in most states. Due to this, you would want to ensure any non-compete agreement insisted upon by an employer be legally valid and enforceable under the laws of the state.
Legally Valid Non-Compete Agreements
When you violate a legally valid agreement, it can cost you money. The employer can file a lawsuit against you and ask for money damages and you may have to pay your former employer. The employer can also ask for an injunction, which will force to you stop the violations due to breach of contract. Factually, the employer can also file a suit against your new employer. In this case, you will probably end up being fired from that job so that new employer can avoid litigation.
Not Having Consequences from Breaking Agreements
At times there is no action taken when you violate a non-compete agreement, and this would be when the employer would rather not go to the trouble of taking legal actions against you. Also if the agreement isn’t binding, it is possible you won’t suffer consequences.
They Should Consult an Attorney
It is important to have an attorney check your non-compete agreement prior to signing it. You want to ensure it is enforceable and binding. You also want to be sure you understand what the non-compete agreement is asking of you. They can be so restrictive that you wouldn’t want to sign it at all. Once reviewed by a contract attorney, you will know whether or not it is a wise idea to sign it and protect yourself for any future work.
Are Non-Compete Agreements Enforceable?
Many ask are non-compete agreements enforceable? Non-Compete agreements are an important aspect of business and help a business prevent unfair competition. They are created to try and prevent any unfair competition between an employee and an employee’s previous employer. When a non-compete is well-drafted with clear requisites, it is valuable for a business in keeping their employees and protecting its confidential information. On the other hand, they can also be too restrictive and therefore useless.
When Non-Compete Agreements are Enforceable
As long as a non-compete is written well, and serves the interests of the employer but not broader than necessary, the agreement is enforceable. Many myths have come about regarding non-compete agreements, and it is much better to be safe and sure about any agreement you are signing as an employee.
Non-Compete Agreements that are Too Restrictive
Some non-compete agreements are very restrictive. This can mean either the state will limit its enforceability or if fully enforced, the employee may find it almost impossible to get work after leaving that job. A non-compete agreement can stop a person from working in the same industry that he just left. This can mean that after years of education and learning skills, he or she can’t find a similar job with comparable pay. Without properly written and phrased non-competes, professionals won’t be able to freely find work, or be able to change employers when they need to.
When Courts Won’t Enforce a Non-Competition Clause for a Company
Whenever a non-compete is signed, there has to be something of value given to the employee in exchange for signing. An exchange of value for a newly hired employee is typically that he is being hired for the job. For employees who have already been hired, some other consideration of value must be made or the non-compete can’t be enforced. The courts also won’t enforce an agreement when it restricts the competition for too long a period. Usually a 6- month period is considered normal. This could vary from business to business. The courts may not enforce a non-compete agreement if it restricts someone from working in a large territory. Often the towns, counties or cities are listed but if too wide an area, it would be unfair and therefore not enforceable.
Legal Counsel for a Non-Competition Clause
When asked to sign a non-compete agreement, it is wise to have a contract attorney look it over and determine if it needs to be changed or even not signed at all. You are in danger of restricting future employment when not having legal counsel protect you.
Why You Should Not Sign a Non-Competition Clause
Many ask why you should not sign a non-compete agreement? A non-compete agreement is an agreement between an employer and an employee in contract form. It prohibits the employee, upon leaving the current job, from working in a business that would compete with the current employer.
Disputes over Non-Competetition Agreements
Disputing a non-compete agreement in court can be difficult since many courts don’t approve of these types of agreements. If the agreement is reasonable, however, the court might uphold it. So as not to end up disputing the agreement, at the time you are presented it, you should agree only to what is necessary to reasonably protect the employer and to get paid for the duration of the non-compete.
To Get Employment
When you are being hired by someone in a state that does not prohibit non-compete agreements, you can be required to sign one in order to get the job. If you don’t sign, you likely will not get the job. But that doesn’t mean you have to just blindly sign whatever is put in front of you. When you have one before you that seems unreasonable, you can simply attempt to negotiate for something less restrictive.
The Legality of Employer Non-Competition Agreements
Not all states accept any non-compete agreements as legal. Oklahoma is one state who refuses to enforce them. California states it is illegal for an employer to even ask an employee to sign one.
Deciding Whether or Not to Sign a Non-Competition Clause
You need to make the decision on whether or not to sign a non-compete agreement. You definitely should not sign one that extends for a long time and covers a wide regional area. This would make it impossible to find work once leaving the current employer. The non-compete needs to be reasonable. You’ll need to watch for it among the stack of papers you are given to sign when starting employment. It is not always possible to foresee every circumstance and that is why it is smart to have a contract attorney look over any non-compete agreement. They can ensure that all is aboveboard and you will not be taken advantage of.
Non-Competition Agreement Attorney
When your PA agreement is reviewed by an experienced attorney, you will find financial benefits which end up outweighing the cost of the review. Leave it to the experts. If you are in need of assistance with an employment agreement or contract review schedule a Physician Assistant Contract Lawyer with Chelle Law today!