Are you looking for an ironclad non-compete agreement Ohio businesses can count on to protect their interests? Ohio non-compete agreements give your business leverage when employees quit, threatening to take your sensitive company data and intellectual property with them. Below, you’ll learn whether non-compete agreements are enforceable in Ohio and what restrictions apply.
Is a Non-Compete Legally Enforceable in Ohio?
Yes, Ohio employers can write and enforce executed non-compete agreements. However, the courts will ultimately decide whether individual agreements are written to give employers and employees reasonable rights and responsibilities, respectively.
As long as you keep time and geography limitations in mind, you should not run afoul of state rules governing non-compete clauses.
Here are a few considerations:
- There aren’t specific non-compete agreement Ohio geographical limitations. That is, the law doesn’t specify a certain mile range. It merely states that geographical limitations must be reasonable.
- Employers can only include reasonable time constraints during which employees cannot work for industry competitors.
- Certain healthcare workers are not bound by non-compete clauses.
- These agreements also cannot be harmful to the public or pose undue hardships on individual employees.
An Ohio non-compete agreement protects confidential information, customer relationships, trade secrets, and proprietary information used to solicit the company’s customers. These are wide protections, showing Ohio takes its non-compete laws seriously.
Reasonable Use and Exemptions
In Ohio, reasonable use for non-compete includes a provision that employers should only include protections that safeguard their business interests. Considerations include whether the employee is the sole contact with specific customers and whether there is a limitation specified in the agreement for time or geographic location. Courts also consider whether the benefit to the employer is greater than the detriment to the employee and whether there are any other means of support for a terminated or separated employee.
Also, it matters where employees gained their knowledge and talent. If they learned their skills mainly from other employers, it’s more difficult for employers to defend their non-compete agreements.
- Enforceable when terminated without cause? Yes
- Employee non-solicitation agreement permitted? Yes
- Customer non-solicitation agreements permitted? Yes
- Does continuing employment equal sufficient consideration? Yes
Non-Compete Agreement Ohio Limitations
Non-compete agreements in Ohio are limited in scope.
Limitations on time
Ohio law imposes a standard of reasonability test to determine how long non-compete agreements can last.
Non-compete agreement Ohio geographical limitations
The Ohio law doesn’t recognize a specific limit to time and space. This means that courts will determine what is reasonable given the circumstances. Take this into consideration when drafting non-compete agreements for your business.
Ohio Non-Compete Agreement Sample
Below, you can download an Ohio non-compete agreement PDF or Word format: