Because restrictive agreements are trade restrictions, Virginia law also provides that competition bans must be interpreted strictly against the employer. If the language of the contract is ambiguous, the language is read by the court against the employer and not against the worker. Okay, enough legal talk. In practice, this is a summary of competition law in the case of Virginia: the threat of legal challenges often leads employers to abandon non-competitive rights altogether or to move outside the court for a small sum of money in exchange for the release of an employee from the non-competition clause. It works whether you`re proactive, reacting to a letter of omission, or even in litigation. In other words, the existence of a non-competition clause must be proportionate in terms of geographical scope, duration and functional limitation. Nevertheless, hundreds of district courts and federal courts have ruled that employment contracts with non-compete agents are enforceable. Whether a non-competition agreement applies against you is an issue that the court will judge on a case-by-case basis. The following questions generally guide the court`s analysis: (1) Is the agreement itself a valid contract? (2) If the contract is valid, is it reasonable? (3) If the worker is valid and reasonable, has the worker broken the contract? (4) If the worker breached the contract, did he cause harm? A non-compete agreement refers to a contractual clause that prevents you from acting on specific sites or markets for a certain period after your employment has expired. This period is usually 1 or 2 years.
From your employer`s perspective, it`s about protecting yourself from losing employees with critical insider knowledge to competitors. The moral of the story is that you have every right to ask questions. If you know the terms of the agreement and what they mean, you can make an informed and informed decision as to whether you are ready to sign the agreement. If you need assistance in preparing or reviewing a non-competition agreement or need a lawyer to represent you or your company in non-competitive litigation, call Chris at 703-273-1400 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. You`re in the right place. As a lawyer who is not competing, I help people determine whether their non-compete clause is applicable under Virginia law and whether there is anything to be done.