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Steven H. Snyder & Associates

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11270 86th Ave N. · Maple Grove, MN 55311

Do Non Compete Agreements Confuse or Overwhelm You?

Protect Yourself with our St. Paul and Minneapolis Business Attorney

Often, companies require an employee to sign a non-compete agreement. This agreement attempts to bind the employee from competing with the employer, when the employee leaves the employ of the company. Depending on how a non-compete agreement is drafted, it may or may not be enforceable. A qualified St. Paul and Minneapolis business lawyer can:

  • Draft a non-compete agreement in the proper format, making sure it is legal and binding
  • Negotiate changes to a non-compete agreement before an employee signs it
  • Provide an employee with a legal opinion regarding a signed non-compete agreement
  • Defend a business from a lawsuit by a former employee or competitor
  • Defend an employee from a lawsuit by a former employer

Enforceability of Non-compete Agreements

Steven H. Snyder & Associates can determine whether a non-compete agreement is enforceable. The Minnesota courts look at specific facts to determine enforceability, and an experienced Minneapolis business lawyer will use these same guidelines in defense of a non-compete lawsuit. The analysis is applied to each individual case.

  • Threshold: is the consideration adequate? Does it support enforcement?
  • Is the employer’s business interests legitimate, and if so, are they deserving of protection?
  • What minimum restriction will protect the business interests of the employer, if they are legitimate? Does the minimum restriction adequately protect the employer’s interest?
  • Is the duration of the non-compete agreement appropriate?
  • Is the geographic limitation on the former employee legitimate?

Litigation of Non-compete Covenants

Most non-compete matters are filed via a temporary injunction or a temporary restraining order. The court applies a five-factor test that the court to determine the outcome of the issue at hand. Two of the issues are “balance of the harm” and the “likelihood of success on the merits.” The court must also find that the employer has been or will be irreparably harmed before it can grant a temporary restraining order or a temporary injunction on the covenant not to compete.
If you are an employee that has signed a non-compete agreement and would continue working in the same field covered by the non-compete agreement, bring the non-compete agreement to a qualified business law attorney for review. An experienced Minneapolis business attorney can advise you of your rights and the possible consequences of “ignoring” a non-compete agreement.

In 2008, three Minnesota court cases made it easier for a business to impose a non-compete agreement. Prior to signing a non-compete agreement, make sure it protects you and that you really should sign it.  Call our Minneapolis and St. Paul lawyer now to review it and give you peace of mind.