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Can an employer use non compete verbiage in non disclosure?

Boynton Beach, FL |

Can an Employer only talk about non-competence in a non disclosure agreement? Will that be valid? And in such a case, will that document be valid for not mentioning the geographical area and the duration it is valid ?

If an employer makes an employee sign a contract and such a non disclosure agreement without referencing each other in them, will the durationin contract be applied to the non disclosure as well ? is there something like a default duration when two documents are signed ?

The non disclosure agreement talks about not giving marketing rights to anybody else but the employer. This is in consideration of the time, effort and expenses incurred in interviewing and for a consulting position. If the candidate breaches this agreement, the employer can seek all damages for the direct/ indirect loss of business.

Attorney Answers 3


  1. This is a complex question that depends on a lot of different factors, which may or may not apply to you.

    In general, a non-compete agreement can be an independent agreement or merged into a more all-encompassing document like a general employment agreement or a non-disclosure agreement. To be valid, a non-compete must usually meet three requirements. It must be REASONABLE in:

    Time- The amount of time you agree not to compete cannot be unreasonably long

    Location- The geographical area in which you agree not to compete must not be exceedingly large.

    Scope- The type of activity in which you agree not to compete in must be narrowly defined.

    But remember, what is reasonable depends on the type of activity, which will, in turn, determine what is a reasonable locale and time period for the non-compete.

    Generally, for most general non-competes, agreeing not to engage in the specific activity you did for the employer in the same metro area for six months to a year is probably alright.

    To answer the second question, normally the document that is the more inclusive, and all-encompassing representation of the two parties' intention will control. In your example, it is very likely that the contract will control; however, if the non-disclosure was agreed to and signed after the contract that can effect the answer to your question as well.

    Without knowing the specifics I can only be general. I'd recommend you contact an employment/labor attorney in your state for more specific information. I hope this helps. If you are in Tennessee you can contact me at the link attached.

    The statements contained herein does not constitute the provision of legal advice. Readers are encouraged to consult with a competent attorney in their jurisdiction for actual legal advice. The opinions expressed herein are general and not intended to be relied upon for any purpose other than general informational purposes.


  2. The problem here is that without the actual agreements in question, we would just be guessing.

    Invest and hour or two with a local employment law attorney to sort this out, preferably before you sign the agreements.

    Look here: http://www.floridanela.org/members.php

    Good luck.

    [Here Comes The Disclaimer] Avvo is a great place for people to share information and that's what we are doing here. Nothing in the answer above should be construed as retaining an attorney or receiving the benefit of retained counsel. We encourage you to retain an attorney and dig into you particular concerns. I urge you to consult another lawyer if you wish a second opinion. Time limitations may affect your rights to pursue a claim; therefore, you should act promptly in consulting another lawyer, or otherwise pursuing your claim. That said, thanks for reading this far and best of luck in all you do.


  3. I agree with Attorney Rogers and the general advice on the law and to consult with an employment attorney. Non-competes are enforceable to the extent reasonable. What is reasonable comes from the statute and facts of the case. Non-disclosure agreements are generally valid period to the extent you are prohibited from disclosing proprietary business information.

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