Geographic Limitation

I will be freelancing and my non-compete from a previous employer has a geographic limit of 60 miles. Does this apply to where I live, where the client is located or both? In other words, if my clients are outside of the 60-mile radius, can I stay at my current residence or do I also have to move outside of the 60-mile radius?

Exact Language:
"Employee shall be prohibited from competing, in the manner set forth above, within a sixty-mile radius of the city of MyCity, Ohio."

1 answer  |  asked Mar 22, 2004 12:35 PM [EST]  |  applies to Ohio

Answers (1)

Neil Klingshirn
Competition is where you do what you do.

Non-competition agreements are contracts. To figure out what they mean, courts look at their plain language and, to the extent that the plain language does not spell out the bargain struck by the parties, industry practice and the practice of the parties.

In your case the language prohibits you from "competing" within 60 miles of a fixed location, your city. Therefore, the issue is the location of the competing activity.

The location of competition is probably where you are when you do what you do. Therefore, if you are a magazine writer working from home, you cannot be living and working within 60 miles of your home. If, however, you are a freelance computer consultant calling on and working for customers 60 or more miles away from your city, you are probably meeting the geographic restriction.

Best regards,


posted by Neil Klingshirn  |  Mar 25, 2004 08:49 AM [EST]

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