A Call For Nationwide Consistency On Noncompetes

By Steven Kayman and Lauren Davis (November 27, 2018, 12:46 PM EST) -- As a general principle, we believe in enforcing contracts in America. With few exceptions, if the contract is clear, signatories are bound by what the document states, even if they later claim they did not read or understand it. Not so with noncompetes and other post-employment restrictions on competition. They are the Wild West, with enforceability varying widely from state to state, country to country and even judge to judge.[1]

Noncompetes have long been controversial. Legal scholars believe that noncompetition agreements first surfaced as early as the Middle Ages when trade guilds were formed by craftsman of various ilk. In the...

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