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Would This Non-solicitation Covenant in a Residential Lease Be Enforced by a California Court?

Los Angeles, CA |

For the duration of this Agreement, and for a period of four (4) years after its termination, LODGER shall not hire, and not directly or indirectly solicit, induce, recruit or encourage any staff employed at the PREMISES, any vendor or independent contractor doing business at the PREMISES, the property management at the PREMISES, any other owner or rental tenant or occupant at the PREMISES, and the developer of the PREMISES, for any business, employment or commercial undertaking, without the written consent of OWNER.

LODGER shall be liable to OWNER for nominal damages in the amount of one dollar ($1) per violation of this section. In the event of breach of this section, LODGER understands and agrees that OWNER may seek equitable relief such such as a court order for specific performance.

Attorney Answers 2


It reads like a "non-compete agreement" clause.

Section 16600 of the California Business and Professions Code states that "every contract by which anyone is restrained from engaging in a lawful profession, trade, or business of any kind is to that extent void."

My guess is that the language you quoted above could not be held as enforceable in a California court. Most of these "non-compete" clauses are usually found in business or employee contracts. That yours appears in a real estate contract is interesting. But Sec. 16600 would still apply to a leasing agreement (which is what a lodger is, a lessee). Deeper legal research might be necessary to see if the courts have handled this question before.

This answer is provided as per the terms and conditions of, and it in no way establishes any attorney-client relationship between any parties reading or relying upon this answer. Members of the public are always advised to seek their own independent legal counsel before making any decision or initiating any action.

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I think the best thing for you would be to see an attorney who can review your contract and answer your questions. Without reviewing the entire contract, it is hard to give you an answer.

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