Most experts allege that non-compete and non-disclosure agreements are increasingly popular, notwithstanding the job market’s unpredictability and uncertainty.
As the industry becomes more technology-oriented and advanced, businesses are concerned about avoiding the intellectual and technical property they have designed from being imitated by their rivals. Indeed, no one wants a former staff opening a similar type of business across the street.
What is a Non-Compete Agreement?
Merely put, non-compete agreements are contracts that limit staff from starting work with a business seen as a rival for a specific period following termination. Also, it stops a worker from exiting to create a business that will directly contest with their present company.
Remember that most of these contracts will also stipulate, or only be executable, within a particular “reasonable” geographical region. Therefore, if you are resigning and relocating to a region where your present company doesn’t sell its products and services, you shouldn’t worry whether your new job is within the same field.
Can You be Fired or Denied a Job for Failing to Sign the Contract?
The most straightforward answer is yes. However, it comes down to how reasonable the contract terms are. Every case is different, and every state handles the contracts differently. Therefore, it would be wise to engage a legal counsel if you are uncertain.
Whatever the case, carefully read the agreement terms and don’t sign anything that doesn’t sit well with you.
How Executable is a Non-Compete Clause?
Like any other legal contract, a non-compete clause is meaningful when a court enforces it. So, your employer can take the matter to court if you violate the non-compete contract. You perhaps don’t want the matter to escalate to trial, but it’s dreadful if you and your employer fail to reconcile.
While it’s hard to anticipate how a particular court will understand a non-compete clause, most will consider various aspects when evaluating the agreement. Usually, contracts firmly defined in terms of geographical area, industry, and timeframe are more likely to be imposed.
Does the Non-Complete Clause Hold After Resigning Unwillingly?
The clause holds even if you are laid off or fired involuntarily in most circumstances. Nonetheless, you have a chance to request your previous employer to waive the clause. In such cases, most companies are willing to relinquish the clause.
What to do Before Signing the Non-Compete Clause
First, familiarize yourself with laws that control non-compete clauses in your state before signing. Second, read the agreement thoroughly. If possible, engage a professional employment lawyer so that you identify whether any necessities are far beyond legal standards in your state.
What is the Objective of a Non-Compete Clause?
While the main objective of this agreement is to protect talent, staff who work in product development sign the clause to safeguard trade secrets. On the other hand, the sales department uses a non-compete clause to protect consumer relationships.
Contacting an attorney first is advisable if you end up in a circumstance where you may have violated the agreement. Although a non-compete clause seems frightening, understanding what is in agreement means you are well protected against any eventuality.