Brown Borkowski & Morrow


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Should I sign a noncompete agreement?

Employers use non-compete agreements to keep their current or former employees from working for the competition. These contracts can help to protect company investments and secrets.

Since non-competes exist in almost every industry or type of job, this paperwork can keep individuals from obtaining a better job even when there are no secrets of investments at stake. Because Michigan law allows for the enforcement of non-competes, you should reconsider signing one.

The legal requirements for signing

When you apply for a new job, an employer may include a non-compete clause in the initial hiring paperwork. They may also present one at any time during your employment. If you receive a non-compete when hired, you can refuse to sign. However, they may refuse to hire you. If you do choose to sign, you could limit your employment options for several years, depending on the terms of the contract.

The enforceability of the contract

If you choose to sign a non-compete but decide to voluntarily terminate your employment, you could face a lawsuit from your past employer. You could also face a court order that keeps you from taking a job with a competitor or a similar job in the industry.

Many non-competes benefit the employer. While it is to protect their interest, the end results often restrict a person’s right to work, find financial security or pursue career advancements. In some contracts, employees are under no obligation to follow the non-compete if the company terminates their employment.

Signing a non-compete could severely impact your employment opportunities. Carefully read through the terms of the agreement before committing to the contract.