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What is a non-compete agreement?

A noncompete agreement is an agreement in which one party (usually an employee) agrees not to enter into, work in, or start, a similar profession or trade in competition against another party (usually the employer). Whether or not a noncompete is enforceable depends on whether it is reasonable. In practical terms, a non-compete agreement is reasonable if it is no more restrictive than is necessary to protect the legitimate interests of the employer. Non-compete restrictions are not enforceable to protect an employer from mere competition by a former employee, but only to the extent that the restrictions protect the employer’s trade secrets or customer contacts. These agreements must be carefully crafted within the bounds of the law.


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