It is not unusual for a company to use a non-compete agreement to prevent their employees from taking a job with a competitor or to prevent them from sharing confidential information related to the company. There are several important points you need to know about a New Hampshire non-compete agreement, including what can be protected, what cannot be enforced, and how you can draw up a non-compete agreement that you can defend.
Is a Non-Compete Legally Enforceable in New Hampshire?
Yes, a non-compete agreement can be legally enforced in New Hampshire. It is not unusual for companies to ask their employees to sign a non-compete agreement before they are hired. If an employee violates any of the stipulations in the agreement, then the company could pursue damages against the employee in court.
It is important for employees to read and understand the non-compete agreement before they sign it, and it is also critical for employers to be aware of the information they included in the non-compete agreement because it has to be legally defensible in court.
There are several examples of information that can be protected by a New Hampshire non-compete agreement. For example, trade secrets and confidential information relevant to the employer’s business interests can be protected by a non-compete agreement. In addition, goodwill, contacts developed during employment, and the employee’s influence over the employer’s customers can also be protected by the scope of the non-compete agreement.
Reasonable Use and Exemptions
There are some limitations that can be placed on a non-compete agreement in New Hampshire. For example, low-wage employees  and physicians are generally not allowed to be subjected to a non-compete agreement.
In addition, the non-compete agreement should not be greater than necessary to protect the legitimate business interests of the employer. Finally, the non-compete agreement cannot be injurious to the public interest or disproportionately harsh to the employee.
A few common questions that people ask about non-compete agreements in New Hampshire include:
- Enforceable when terminated without cause? Not decided
- Employee non-solicitation agreement permitted? Yes
- Customer non-solicitation agreements permitted? Yes
- Does continuing employment equal sufficient consideration? Yes
Non-Compete Agreement New Hampshire Limitations
In general, employers need to make sure they are not placing an undue burden on their employees by asking them to sign a non-compete agreement.
Limitations on time
In the event of a breach of a non-compete agreement signed in New Hampshire, you have 3 years to file a lawsuit.
Non-compete agreement New Hampshire geographical limitations
New Hampshire law does not specify a specific geographic limitation regarding non-compete agreements; however, reasonable restrictions must be applied to the non-compete agreement for it to be enforceable. If the geographic limitation does not make sense given the nature of the employer’s business interests, then it might be difficult to defend in court.
New Hampshire Non-Compete Agreement Sample
If you want to draw up a New Hampshire non-compete agreement, we have a New Hampshire non-compete agreement template below, which is available in PDF and Word format: