Richmond Non-Compete Agreements Lawyer
Non-compete agreements have become increasingly common in Richmond in a wide variety of employment settings. Violating the terms of a non-competition clause can result in serious legal consequences, so it is essential to understand the terms of an agreement.
A Richmond non-compete agreements lawyer from the Spiggle Law Firm could help you negotiate terms of an agreement before signing or assist in avoiding a breach or defending your interests if you have been accused of violating an agreement. Assistance from a knowledgeable employment law attorney could save you time and money in the long run.
Understanding a Non-Compete Agreement
A non-compete agreement may be a stand-alone document or incorporated into another contract that you sign as part of an employment relationship. If you are is not certain whether you have agreed to a non-compete clause, a Richmond non-compete agreements attorney could review the situation and ascertain your legal obligations.
In a typical non-compete agreement, the employee pledges not to go to work for a competitor or start their own similar business in the area for a specified period. Businesses that require employees to accept the terms of non-compete agreements usually do so to ensure they can share ideas and trade secrets without fear that the information will be freely given to competitors. In other words, non-compete agreements are crafted for the benefit of the employer.
When an Employee Violates a Non-Compete Agreement
A properly drafted and executed non-compete agreement operates as a legally binding contract. Often, these agreements include terms specifying consequences if the employee should breach the agreement. For example, an employee may be required to pay damages amounting to the actual losses suffered by the company due to the competition, or pay an amount specified as liquidated damages.
Even if an employee has not violated the terms of a non-compete agreement or if the agreement is written in a way that makes it legally unenforceable, they still may be required to mount a defense in court. Consulting a non-compete agreements lawyer in Richmond early in the process could help avoid costly court action.
Terms That Can Make a Non-Compete Agreement Unenforceable
The employer bears the burden of demonstrating that a non-compete provision is necessary, valid, and not overly restrictive. To be enforceable, the restrictions in a non-compete agreement should be no more than what is needed to protect the legitimate business interests of the employer.
In addition, the agreement should not overly restrict an employee’s ability to earn a living and should not violate public policy. It should be noted, however, that terms which could be considered overly restrictive in one situation may be reasonable and valid in another. Seasoned legal counsel from Spiggle Law could examine the terms of an agreement in light of the specific situation to determine whether it is valid.
Work with an Experienced Richmond Non-Compete Agreements Attorney
The best outcomes for employers and employees alike often result when an experienced legal representative reviews the terms of an agreement before signing. An attorney could ensure that the agreement is drafted in terms that enable it to accomplish its purpose without overly restricting an employee’s future opportunities.
Once a non-compete agreement has been signed, a Richmond non-compete agreements lawyer could also help you evaluate and interpret the agreement and negotiate a settlement between parties if there is a dispute or alleged violation. If necessary, they could even defend against any actions for breach of a non-compete agreement. To learn how a knowledgeable legal advocate could help in your situation, click here to get a free online review of your case.