In the initial days of starting a new job, a person is often presented with what seems like volumes of paperwork from operating manuals and policies to tax forms and other legal documents. It may get to the point where a person briefly scans any documents presented to them before simply signing their name without giving the matter much more thought.
While it may not seem like it at the time, this move could perhaps prove to be problematic further down the line, especially if one of these documents to which they gave only a cursory review was a non-compete agreement.
In general, a non-compete agreement is essentially a document stating that in the event the employee is terminated or no longer employed, they won't practice in the same field in the same area for a set amount of time.
By way of example, consider a computer salesperson not being allowed to sell computers for at least two years within 40 miles of the location of their previous employer.
While such agreements may seem unconscionable, it's important to understand that so long as they satisfy the following criteria, there's a very good chance that they will be enforced by a court here in Florida:
- They are reasonable in relation to both geography and duration
- They protect a legitimate business interest
In light of this reality, it's conceivable how you might feel dismayed and frustrated if you are offered what amounts to your dream job, but are otherwise subject to a non-compete agreement.
It's important not to automatically give up, however, as there remains a possibility that a former employer would perhaps be willing to discuss a mutually acceptable resolution that would enable both parties to move forward, or that the agreement is somehow invalid.
At Gallup Law, we understand and appreciate the delicacy with which matters like these must be handled. To that end, we have extensive experience in this area from reviewing non-compete agreements to negotiating workable solutions.
To learn more about how we might be of assistance, please visit our website.