3 Ways To Plan For A Possible Federal Ban On Noncompetes

By Russell Beck and Erika Hahn (March 17, 2021, 5:24 PM EDT) -- Noncompetition agreements — one of the key tools companies use to protect their trade secrets, hard-fought customer relationships and other state-recognized legitimate business interests — are under siege.

Let's start from the beginning.

In 2016, Congress observed that "trade secret theft, wherever it occurs, harms the companies that own the trade secrets and the employees of the companies."[1] The harm was so great that Congress passed — nearly unanimously — the Defend Trade Secrets Act, providing a private right of action to owners of trade secrets.

But, because policing a former employee's — and his or her new employer's — conduct...

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