If you have lived or worked in multiple states during the course of your career, you are probably familiar with non-compete agreements in the workplace. In many states, employers are allowed to require new employees to sign a non-competition agreement before being officially hired. These agreements protect employers by preventing employees from divulging trade secrets, sharing information, or working for a competing firm in the future. While they are legal in many states, they are strictly prohibited in the state of California. If you have been forced into signing a non-compete agreement or believe you have been discriminated against for not signing a non-compete agreement, you have the right to pursue legal action.
WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF A NON-COMPETE AGREEMENT?
From an employer’s point of view, a non-compete agreement is a form of protection that limits potential competition from those with an intimate understanding of how its business works and operates. While this is a completely justified reason for requiring a non-compete agreement, there are also restrictions that inhibit individuals from the right to make a living in the future. In many non-compete agreements, employees are prohibited from working for or starting a company in the same industry in future years. It is for this reason that many states outlaw non-compete agreements. California is one of those states.
NON-COMPETE AGREEMENTS ILLEGAL IN LOS ANGELES AND CALIFORNIA
While many states allow ‘reasonable’ non-compete agreements, California completely disallows them, no matter how well-intended they may be. If you have been fired for refusing to sign a non-compete agreement, you have been wrongfully terminated. Damages could include lost wages and punitive costs. It is also unlawful for a new employer to deny or fire you because an old employer claims you are restricted under a non-compete agreement.
If your employment status has been negatively affected as a result of a non-compete agreement in California, you have the right to damages. Contact a lawyer as soon as possible to begin the process of regaining your legal rights.
LAW OFFICES OF MANN & ELIAS
At Mann & Elias, we have more than 40 years of combined experience in employment law. We represent clients at every level of local, state, and federal law and have recovered more than $18 million in settlements and verdicts to prove our success. We handle all cases on a contingency basis and will not charge you until there is a recovery in your case. Contact us today for a free initial consultation.