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Tampa Business Litigation Attorneys / Tampa Non-Compete Agreement Attorney

Tampa Non-Compete Agreement Attorney

Non-compete agreements in Tampa, and throughout Florida, protect a company’s legitimate business interests. Still, to the employee it can feel like punishment. Non-compete agreements can make it difficult for workers to earn an honest living and so, the law and courts in Florida scrutinize them very carefully. Still, they are enforceable in The Sunshine State as long as they comply with certain requirements. Below, our Tampa non-compete agreement attorney outlines what these are, and how to ensure your contract is properly drafted and executed.

What are Non-Compete Agreements?

Non-compete agreements are sometimes drafted as a separate document from other employment contracts, or they are included as a clause in a document that covers many areas of employment. A non-compete agreement prohibits employees from working in a similar industry, usually within a certain geographical location and for a certain amount of time. A non-compete agreement can also only be used to protect legitimate business interests. When a contract does not comply with these requirements, the courts can strike it down. Our Tampa non-compete agreement attorney can ensure your contract is drafted properly and enforceable.

Protecting Legitimate Business Interests

State law dictates that non-compete agreements can only protect legitimate business interests. These can include the following:

  • Trade secrets, such as formulas, recipes, or procedures
  • Professional or confidential information that does not meet the statutory definition of a trade secret
  • Significant relationships with specific existing or potential clients, customers, or patients
  • Extraordinary or specialized training the employer provided to the employee
  • Goodwill of clients, customers, or patients relations to trademarks and marketing within a specific marketing or geographic location

The above list is not exhaustive. If an employee challenges the restrictive covenant, the burden of proof falls on the employer to establish that it is necessary to protect their legitimate business interests.

Reasonable Geographic and Time Restrictions

Non-compete agreements are sometimes necessary, particularly if you run a business in a highly competitive field. Still, employees cannot have these restrictions placed on them indefinitely. Typically, the courts in Florida will not uphold agreements that extend past two years, although there are instances when longer restrictions may apply.

When determining whether the geographical restriction is reasonable, the courts will first determine if the company already does business in that area. For example, if you prohibited an employee from competing with your business in Florida and California, but you do not conduct business on the west coast, a court would likely deem the contract void and strike it down, which may leave your business unprotected.

Our Non-Compete Agreement Attorney in Tampa Can Draft Your Contract

While you can place certain restrictions on your employees, you are also limited in doing so. At BBDG Law, our Tampa non-compete agreement attorney can review the facts of your situation and draft a contract that will protect your business while also being reasonable to your employees. Call us today at (813) 221-3759 or fill out our online form to request a consultation with our experienced attorney and to get the legal help you need.