I worked in sales for a moving company. My first day of work, they had me sign a non-compete. I never knew anything about it beforehand. I have since been laid off and am trying to get other employment. A potential employer knows that my previous employer has non-compete contracts. They said that they would need a letter releasing me from my noncompete to consider hiring me. My previous employer will not do that. What do I do?

1 answer  |  asked Apr 20, 2009 11:25 AM [EST]  |  applies to Pennsylvania

Unlock Non-Compete Agreements: Keys to Escape

Answers (1)

Christopher Ezold
A noncompetition agreement is generally not enforceable against an employee who has been laid off.

Before I respond to your inquiry, I must state that we have not spoken, I have not reviewed the relevant documents and facts, and I do not represent you. Therefore, my discussion below is not a legal opinion, but is informational only. Finally, my discussion applies only to issues to which Pennsylvania or Federal law apply, unless otherwise specified.

That being said,a noncompetition agreement is generally not enforceable against an employee who has been laid off - through no fault of the employee. If, however, you have been terminated due to your own fault, the noncompete may be enforceable.

The courts don't like employers to lay off workers, and then restrict those workers from earning a living.

Furthermore, if you had reached an agreement as to the terms of your employment with your employer, and then get surprised with a noncompete on your first day, you may not be bound.

If you would like to discuss this matter further, please feel free to contact me at the below address(es) or number.

/Christopher E. Ezold/
Nancy O'Mara Ezold, P.C.
One Belmont Avenue,
Suite 501
Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004
(610) 660-5585

posted by Christopher Ezold  |  Apr 20, 2009 1:28 PM [EST]

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