Boston Non-Compete Agreement: They Are Here to Stay
Over the course of this last year, there has been some debate within the Massachusetts government about the status and use of non-compete agreements within the workplace. Non-compete clauses have been a regular part of many employment agreements over the years and more recently tech companies have latched on and claimed them as a necessary part of their industry.
As an employer, these agreements help grant you legal protections should your workers jump ship and take some of your trade secrets with them. On the other hand, opponents to these agreements argue that they can squelch innovation and that a good business would not need their protection. If a non-compete clause is not part of your employment agreement, you may want to consider adding one.
Should Your Business Use a Non-Compete Agreement?
The answer to this question strongly depends on two factors. First, what industry are you involved in? If you are in technological development of any kind, the answer seems to be a resounding yes. Some CPAs, Lawyers, and other professional service providers also require that their employees sign non-competes. The real key in this question is whether or not your employees can take business or secrets with them should they decide to go somewhere else.
Second, do you have any unique trade secrets that need to be protected? It is important that you are honest with yourself about this. A potentially great employee can be scared away if you are tying him or her into some long non-compete when there really is nothing for them to steal. If you do decide to use a non-compete agreement, consulting with a Boston business attorney can help ensure that you get the protection you need.
Are You Treating Your Employees Right?
One of the arguments that came up with the recent discussions about non-competes is that a company that treats its employees right would not need one. Though this is simplifying the issue a bit, the notion is not that far off. Rather than having to worry about whether your employees will jump ship or not, it is important that you garner a community atmosphere in your workplace and recognize individual accomplishments. There are a lot of ways to build loyalty and many of them just cost you a little bit of time.
Ultimately, no one wants to enforce a non-compete. If you do ensure that the work environment encourages growth and garners a sense of loyalty, then you will typically find that employees have no reason to jump ship. This will save the time of talking with a Boston business attorney and having to sue because you just lost one of your best. When you find that you have questions about a non-compete agreement or are looking for the best way to prepare one for your business, contact Jeffrey Cymrot of Sassoon & Cymrot for individual guidance and consultation.