Many employers in the San Antonio area use employment contracts that involve non-compete clauses. Non-compete clauses may restrict workers from gaining employment with other companies in the future. Anyone who is ever asked to sign a non-compete agreement would be wise to look it over with an employment law attorney before doing so. Those who have already signed an agreement and are in the midst of an enforcement action would also be wise to seek legal advice – in some cases, these agreements are not legally enforceable.
A man in Tyler County, Texas, has recently sued his former employer, alleging that he should not be subject to a non-compete agreement now that he is no longer working for that company.
The man was hired as the vice president of this company in 2009, at which time he was presented with a shareholder agreement that contained non-compete restrictions as well as non-disclosure provisions. He now says that he never submitted to that agreement, though he did end up earning shares in the company.
The man resigned from his position in 2013, and since then the company has attempted to enforce the shareholder agreement. The company has said that it will sue him – and his future employers – if he violates the non-compete or non-disclosure clauses of the shareholder agreement.
The man has argued in his lawsuit that he is not obligated to the terms of the agreement because, essentially, he never agreed to them.
He has asked the court to declare that he is free to seek employment wherever he would like; that he is not bound by the shareholder agreements; and is not in possession of trade secrets, among other things. He has also asked that his former employer pay his legal fees.
Source: Southeast Texas Record, “Man disputes non-compete clause in former employer’s agreement,” Kelly Holleran, Aug. 26, 2013