Arlington Non-Compete Agreements Lawyer
If you are questioning the terms of a non-compete agreement, consider getting professional advice about your rights from a qualified Arlington non-compete agreements lawyer. A capable employment attorney could review the agreement you are considering and advise you about its scope and enforceability. A lawyer could advise you about the possible ways to modify the agreement to better suit your interests. Contact our offices today for answers to your personal employment questions.
What Is a Non-Compete Agreement?
A non-compete agreement is an employer-initiated restriction of an employee’s right to engage in certain activities during and/or after the employment relationship. Common terms of these agreements include:
- Non-competition: prohibits an employee from working for a competing business for a set period and in a certain geographic area
- Non-solicitation/non-recruitment: agreement to not poach customers or co-workers and take them to a new employer
- Confidentiality: agreement to protect trade secrets such as business techniques, recipes, formulas, and customer lists
An employer will often require new employees to sign these agreements during the onboarding process, but employers can request them at any point in the employment relationship. Sometimes non-competes are part of a severance package or are presented with a promotion into higher ranks of the business.
Regardless of the stage, it arises, if you believe the agreement unfairly restricts your employment options if you leave your job, you may want to get legal advice from an Arlington non-compete agreements lawyer.
Reasonable and Enforceable Agreements
Although Virginia law may not enforce non-compete agreements if they put unfair restraints on trade, they may be enforceable when they are reasonable and protect legitimate business interests. Virginia courts have developed a three-part test to determine the reasonableness of a non-compete agreement. To be enforceable, an agreement’s terms must be necessary to protect the legitimate business interests of the employer, not present an unduly harsh or oppressive restraint on the employee’s efforts to earn a living and be consistent with sound public policy.
Virginia does not follow the blue pencil doctrine that some other states apply. Under this rule, a court will revise a non-compete agreement by eliminating problematic parts of the agreement while still enforcing the valid parts. In Arlington, however, if a court deems part of a non-compete agreement unenforceable, the entire agreement is invalid. This can be beneficial to employees fighting an unfair non-compete agreement.
While many non-compete agreements are reasonable, some employers over-reach, making agreements unreasonable and unenforceable. Some employers may also claim there has been a breach of an agreement when there was not. For more information, contact an Arlington non-compete agreements lawyer.
How an Arlington County Non-Compete Agreements Attorney Can Help
If an employer asks you to sign a non-compete agreement or any other contract, review it carefully. Getting legal advice at this stage could help you understand the agreement and minimize future troubles.
However, if you signed an agreement in the past and your former employer is now trying to enforce against it you, getting legal advice may be particularly urgent. A skilled lawyer can help you navigate the complex legal landscape in either of these situations and help you understand your rights and obligations.
An Arlington non-compete agreements lawyer could take the time to understand your work history, review the agreement in question, and advise you of actions you can take to protect your interests. Consult with The Spiggle Law Firm by filling out our free online review today.