Is My Non-Compete Clause Valid in California? 

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Posted by Legal Team On November 5, 2023

A non-compete clause is often a component of a contract, and while it may make sense from the business’s standpoint, it is rarely a good thing for the employee. In such a clause, the contract typically restricts a person from working with or through a direct competitor of that company. Yet, when you leave one job, your skills may be directly beneficial to another company. Should you be limited? Is a non-compete clause valid in California?

If you believe your rights are being limited, The Armstrong Law Firm can help. Contact our San Francisco breach of contract attorney for immediate support.

Non-Compete Clauses are Not Valid in California

The State of California does not allow employment contracts to include a non-compete clause. This falls under the California Business and Professions Codes. As an employee, this means that the court will not uphold an employment contract that includes any type of restriction on anyone who is engaged in a legal practice or trade within the state.

Such a clause can be detrimental to the overall well-being of the individual. It may limit where you can work and who you can talk to about the work you do.

Can Your Employer Demand That You Sign a Non-Compete Clause?

It is not legal for an employer to demand that an employee sign a non-compete clause as a component of or in addition to their employment contract. If they were to require this, the employer could face steep fines in the amount of $100 per employee per pay period. With numerous employees over a long period of time, this can become a very expensive fine.

What Should You Do if Your Employer Has a Non-Compete Clause in Place?

If you believe that there is a non-compete clause within your employment contract – no matter the age of that contract – you should contact our employment attorneys for help and guidance. It is possible to seek out compensation for your losses in these situations. This may be possible, for example, if the clause impacted your livelihood, perhaps restricting you from taking on a job that could have bettered your life.

In situations where this can be proven, it may amount to you receiving 25% of the imposed penalty on the employer. That can be a significant amount of money. Keep in mind that you will need to prove that this was in place and that the employer did not remove the clause in subsequent signings of an employment contract as laws in the state changed.

Let Us Offer Insight Into Your Options

When your rights are violated, you need a trusted attorney by your side to help you. The Armstrong Law Firm is ready to do that. Let us help you navigate your rights and the limitations of non-compete clauses in California, whether they are older or new. We can fight for the compensation you are owed in situations like this. Do not wait to contact us for a free consultation to learn what your rights are.