Non-compete agreements have been around for a while and because they now have an extensive history, we are beginning to see some backlash concerning the appropriateness of non-competes. For instance, the State of Massachusetts is considering banning non-compete agreements arguing that the Uniform Trade Secret Act, which prevents employees from stealing trade secrets, is sufficient to protect employers when employees leave their employment. Recent publicity of non-compete cases involving non-compete restrictions against employees who would not be in a position to damage their employer upon leaving employment such as camp counselors and the like have enticed the backlash against non-compete agreements. I also see a growing trend particularly in touch economic times of judges attempting to find reasons to restrict or invalidate non-compete agreements.
What do you think? Do non-compete agreements hinder fair completion and are employers adequately protected by existing trade secret laws? Or, are non-competes favoring competition because they encourage employers to entrust confidential information and key relationships to employees that they would otherwise not share in the absence of a non-compete agreement?
If you have a non-compete agreement that requires enforcement, consult an experienced non-compete attorney for appropriate advice concerning the validity of your non-compete agreement.