Whether you are a small business owner or working for a larger corporation, you may be familiar with non-compete agreements and how they can protect your business. Non-compete clauses are created to keep your company’s mission, business agreements and inner workings safe and protected from competing companies. When you hire a new employee, you want to ensure that they will not disclose any of your private company information with other businesses should they quit or become terminated from their position. It is critical that you set up your non-compete arrangement in such a way that it is enforceable and stands up legally in your contract.
When drafting the contract, make sure your contract includes all of the important components of a non-compete agreement. This includes how long employees are restricted from working for a competing business once they are terminated, as well as the geographic area they are bound to. You should also be specific regarding the market in which the agreement is involved. In Ohio, employers must ensure that the skills restricted by the non-compete were developed during employment at the business. Furthermore, the agreement must not pose a strict hardship on the employee.
It is also important to use plain language when creating your non-compete so that the employees can clearly understand what they are signing. This will protect your business from losing any trade secrets, customer lists or proprietary skills that your employee may have gained while working for your company.
This information is intended to educate and should not be taken as legal advice.