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How Far Is Too Far? New York Non-Compete Terms Growing Stricter

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In recent months, the economy has begun to improve, bringing with it more opportunities for employees. This improvement dramatically changes the balance of power within the workforce. Previously, workers were far more likely to remain with their employer because the economy was in a recession and there were few other options that existed. Now that there are more jobs available, employees may consider looking for positions that offer better pay or benefits. As a result, more employers are turning to non-compete agreements. These non-compete agreements are also becoming more strict. How far can a New York employer go when it comes to the terms of such a contract?

One plaintiff is putting this question to the test in a New York business litigation matter. Mazhar Saleem, a town car driver, is challenging the terms of his New York non-compete agreement. Saleem alleges that the non-compete prevents him from being able to earn a living. He is not eligible for benefits, overtime pay, or guaranteed hours under the terms of his contract, and is also forbidden from working for another company as a driver.

Does Saleem’s contract go far? The courts will ultimately decide. For a non-compete provision to be upheld as enforceable in New York, it must meet the following requirements:

  • The provision must not go beyond what is needed to protect the legitimate interest of the employer.
  • The provision cannot be overly broad or manifestly unfair to the employee.
  • The provision cannot be injurious to the public.
  • The provision must be reasonably limited with regard to the length of time for which it is imposed as well as the geographic scope to which it applies.

To learn more about potential breaches or the enforceability of a non-compete agreement in New York, contact an experienced New York business litigation lawyer today. Call our office at (888) 497-3410 for a consultation.

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