Non Compete Agreements
Non Compete and Non Solicitation Agreements Attorneys Columbus, Ohio
The purpose of a non-compete or non-solicitation agreement is to prohibit an employee from working in a similar business as his/her former employer or soliciting clients of a former employer. Your ability to work might be severely restricted by signing a non compete or non-solicitation agreement, so it is of the utmost importance you consult with a Columbus non compete agreement lawyer before you sign anything.
Non-compete and non-solicitation agreements are common. Our Columbus, Ohio non compete attorneys can assist you before you sign a non-compete, by explaining the legal ramifications of the non-compete agreement, along with negotiating its terms to be sure it is beneficial to you, not just the employer. If you’ve already signed a non-compete agreement and are thinking about resigning from your employment, we can discuss your rights with you. Our Ohio non compete agreement law firm will tell you exactly what you can and cannot do, pursuant to the terms of your non-compete agreement. We can also assist you if a dispute has arisen pursuant to the terms of your non-compete agreement, typically after you are no longer employed with the former employer.
Is My Non-Compete Agreement Enforceable?
The answer to this question will depend on whether your non-compete agreement is “reasonable” as defined by Ohio case law. Ohio generally recognizes non-compete agreements as enforceable against the parties who sign it, as long as its terms are not unreasonable. Whether or not the terms of your non-compete are reasonable depends on a large variety of factors and your specific situation. The Ohio Supreme Court laid out the three most important factors, in Raimonde v. Van Vlerdah (1975), 42 Ohio St.2d 21.
Specifically, the Court said a non compete restriction is reasonable if it satisfies all of the following:
- The restriction is no greater than what is required for the protection of the employer’s legitimate business interest.
- The restriction does not impose undue hardship on the employee.
- The restriction is not injurious to the public.
How do we determine if your non compete is reasonable using this formula? The Court also provides a variety of other factors our Ohio non compete agreement lawyers can use to determine if your non-compete agreement is enforceable. Those factors include:
- the absence or presence of limitations as to time and space;
- whether the employee represents the sole contact with the customer;
- whether the employee is possessed with confidential information or trade secrets;
- whether the covenant seeks to eliminate competition which would be unfair to the employer or merely seeks to eliminate ordinary competition;
- whether the covenant seeks to stifle the inherent skill and experience of the employee;
- whether the benefit to the employer is disproportional to the detriment to the employee;
- whether the covenant operates as a bar to the employee’s sole means of support;
- whether the employee’s talent which the employer seeks to suppress was actually developed during the period of employment; and
- whether the forbidden employment is merely incidental to the main employment. Id. at 25.
To determine whether your non compete agreement is enforceable, you will need the assistance of a Columbus non-compete agreement attorney. Call us today and we can help you.