How to Get Started on Non-Compete Clauses: What Dallas Companies Should Know
Dallas Businesses Must Protect Confidential Info to Maintain Advantages3 min read
When it comes to heading off potential competition, Dallas businesses of all sizes need to ensure that their confidential information remains protected from weakening their own advantage. One way to do this is by requiring employees to sign a non-compete agreement, or sometimes known as a “covenant not to compete.” Establishing a non-compete agreement is essential for businesses to protect their trade secrets, confidential information, and other proprietary information.
In this article, we will discuss the key factors you should consider if you are a Dallas business looking to create your non-compete clause.
What Does a Non-Compete Agreement Do?
A non-compete agreement is a legally binding contract entered into between an employer and an employee. The goal of a non-compete agreement is to prevent an employee from taking advantage of certain relationships and information they acquired during their employment, such as confidential client identities or important development details about the company’s products.
Essentially, a non-compete agreement states that an employee agrees to not use or distribute confidential information or to compete with the employer’s business.
What is the Scope of a Non-Compete Agreement?
The scope of a non-compete agreement will depend on the unique nature and circumstances of the business and your employees’ roles within the company. Generally, it is important for the agreement to be tailored to an individual’s duties and the subject of the confidential information being protected.
Your non-compete agreement should specifically define the types of activity or conduct that are prohibited, the geographical limitations of the agreement, and the duration of time that the agreement is in effect.
What Can Dallas Businesses Do to Be Sure Their Non-Compete Agreements are Enforced?
To ensure that your non-compete agreement is enforceable and legally binding, there are a few considerations to keep in mind:
1. The non-compete agreement should be fair and reasonable with respect to the scope and limits imposed.
2. The agreement should be reasonably related to what is needed to protect the employer’s legitimate business interests.
3. The agreement should not be grossly excessive in duration or geographic scope.
4. Clear, concise language should be used so that it is easily understood by all parties.
5. Properly inform employees of the agreement before they sign it.
6. Follow through with enforcing the agreement or else it may be deemed invalid.
What are the Potential Risks of a Non-Compete Agreement?
Although non-compete agreements provide important protection to employers, it is important that companies understand the potential risks that come with using these agreements. These risks include violating the employee’s right to freedom of movement, making it difficult to hire workers that can help you build your business, and potentially creating costly litigation costs.
It is important for companies to thoroughly assess their business needs and competitive landscape when creating a non-compete agreement.
The main takeaway
When used properly, non-compete agreements can be an effective tool for Dallas companies looking to protect their confidential information, business relationships, and other proprietary information while heading off potential competition. For an effective non-compete agreement, though, companies must make sure to properly formalize the scope of the agreement, ensure the agreement is fair and reasonable, and be aware of the potential risks associated with the use of a non-compete agreement.