Non-Compete Restrictions

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Hello. I signed a non-compete that restricts me from working with another company located within the US and within my field of work for 1 year following my termination date (whether that be voluntary or involuntary). I have been with this company for 6 months and just recently completed training. I was offered the same position with a different company in this industry. How enforceable is my non-compete in the state of Colorado if I was not in a managerial position or posses any trade secrets? Thanks!

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Posted by Anonymous
Asked on April 20, 2020 8:09 pm
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Non-competition agreements are generally void in Colorado unless they fall under specific exceptions, which include agreements relating to executive and management personnel and their staff, and agreements relating to trade secrets. An employer may also be entitled to reimbursement for the costs of training an employee who stays with the company less than two years. You indicate that you're not in a management role and that you don't possess any trade secrets. If your employer agrees, then you should be in the clear. I assume by your question, however, that you're worried your employer might disagree. If that's the case, then the enforceability of the contract will turn on the underlying facts. Disputes about whether the employee is in a managerial role generally turn on whether the employee has significant responsibility for the business and acts in a supervisory capacity. The issue of trade secrets can be even more complicated, and the courts look at multiple factors, including the measures the company has taken to obtain or develop the information, the company's interest in keeping the information from its competitors, whether the information relates to the business, the value of the information to the business, and the measures the company has taken to maintain the secrecy of the information.

Departing employees often face the difficult choice between (1) asking their current employer for "permission" to move onto the next job, or (2) simply moving on and hoping that the former employer doesn't sue them. An attorney can help you assess this risk.

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Posted by steve@robinsonandhenry.com (Questions: 0, Answers: 12)
Answered on April 21, 2020 9:31 am
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Generally, in Colo Non-Competes are difficult for employers to enforce. However, in evaluating your specific risks and options as related to your Non-Compete several factual issues need to be discussed in detail and the specific language of your individual Non-Compete needs to be reviewed and evaluated.
Likely, you have a lot at risk. As such, I recommend that before you move forward with the offer you have an assessment with one of our attorneys to review the document and discuss your rights, remedies, and risks. Just call 303-688-0944 or schedule online at robandhen.wpengine.com/locations. It is likely that we can see you today or tomorrow and you don't have to drive to our office we can meet virtually via Zoom or Google Hangouts.

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Posted by donald@robinsonandhenry.com (Questions: 0, Answers: 282)
Answered on April 21, 2020 9:24 am