“Congratulations! You’ve got the job! Stop by H.R. to sign off on some paperwork and I’ll see you Monday.”
Such words, when directed towards a job applicant, are typically met with a multitude of emotions, all of them positive. However, any request to “sign off on some paperwork” should also be met with caution, as the language in a non-compete agreement can profoundly impact both an employee and an employer long after the employment relationship ends.
In today’s economy, newly hired employees are frequently asked to sign non-compete agreements. Such agreements are sought by employers for a variety of reasons. They protect an employer’s trade secrets from being utilized by former employees in a manner that may be adverse to an employer’s interests. They also protect an employer’s client lists from solicitation by former employees that accept positions with a competitor. Furthermore, they enable an employer to justify the expense in training a newly hired employee by ensuring that the employee will not use the information for the betterment of a competitor in the industry. All of the above-reasons are understandable and Courts will typically enforce provisions that are aimed at protecting such interests.
However, a Court may also refuse to enforce the language in a non-compete agreement. This is done when a court finds that the non-compete agreement is injurious to the public, imposes an undue hardship on an employee, or is greater than what is necessary to protect the employer’s legitimate interests.
Given such facts, it is vitally important for both employers and employees to have a full understanding of the non-compete agreements to which they are a party. Such an understanding is achievable by meeting with an attorney at Polito Paulozzi Rodstrom LLP.
If you are an employer that wishes to incorporate non-compete agreements into your business, a meeting with an employment law attorney at Polito Paulozzi Rodstrom will enable you to protect your interests to the maximum extent available under Ohio law.
If you are an employee who has been asked to sign a non-compete agreement, a meeting with an experienced employment law attorney at Polito Paulozzi Rodstrom will enable you to better understand what rights you are giving up when you decide to sign a non-compete agreement.