A Massachusetts Mon-Compete Agreement is a contract that prevents employees from taking their knowledge to a competitor for a certain amount of time after leaving the business. An employer can also use a non-compete agreement to specify confidential information that cannot be shared.
A non-compete agreement can cover trade secrets vital to the interest of the business, other types of confidential information related to the company, and goodwill shown by the company.
Reasonable Uses and Objections
- Enforceable when terminated without cause? – No, if signed in or after 2018. Yes, if signed before 2018.
- Employee non-solicitation agreement permitted? – Yes.
- Customer non-solicitation agreements permitted? – Yes.
- Does continuing employment equal sufficient consideration? – No.
Legally Enforceable in Massachusetts?
Yes, a non-compete agreement is legally enforceable in Massachusetts as per c.149 § 24L(b). You can use it to protect your confidential information by preventing an employee from sharing the information they learned at your business with your competitors; however, if you want your non-compete agreement to be enforceable, you need to understand the rules and limitations.
Reasonable Use and Exemptions
A non-compete agreement must be narrowly tailored to protect legitimate business interests in Massachusetts. It has to be limited in time, space, and scope. If a non-compete agreement is inconsistent with public policy, it could be thrown out. In addition, requirements added in 2018 require that both parties be given adequate notice.
The employee must be presented at least ten business days to review the non-compete agreement and be allowed to speak with legal counsel before signing the contract.
Furthermore, several categories of employees cannot be required to sign a non-compete agreement. They include broadcasters, physicians, nurses, social workers, psychologists, students, interns, short-term employees, and FLSA nonexempt employees.
In case of a breach of a non-compete agreement signed in Massachusetts, you have six years to bring a lawsuit.
There are no hard and fast geographical limits on non-compete agreements signed in Massachusetts; however, it has to be consistent with the public interest, and they cannot create an undue burden on employees. If it does, a judge could decide to withdraw the agreement.
Take a look at our Massachusetts non-compete agreement sample, and download it in either Word or PDF format: