Noncompete agreements touch many U.S. workers

Among the things that can have significant impacts on workers is whether a noncompete agreement is among the contracts they have entered into in relation to their job. For one, such agreements can have major implications regarding a worker's options and situation when their employment at their current job ends.

The federal government is forming a group to look into these impactful kinds of agreements, according to a recent government report. The group will contain experts from various different fields.

Along with looking into general issues regarding noncompete agreements, the group will also purportedly be looking into state practices regarding these agreements. Different states have different rules regarding noncompete provisions, such as rules on when such provisions are valid and enforceable. One wonders what findings the group will make regarding the various approaches states have taken to these agreements and what sorts of recommendations it will make regarding state practices on noncompete agreements. One also wonders if the eventual findings and recommendations of the group will have any impacts on how states treat noncompete agreements in the future.

What do you think are the ideal set of rules when it comes to noncompete agreements?

What rules and practices a state has on noncompete agreements can have very wide impacts, given how common such agreements are. The prevalence of these agreements can be seen in some estimates made in the above-mentioned government report. The report estimated that the number of U.S. employees that are currently subject to a noncompete agreement is around 30 million. Such agreements can come up in all different kinds of fields (including fields that are considered lower-wage ones). However, there are fields where such agreements are particularly prevalent. The above-mentioned report identified computer/mathematical and engineering fields as such fields.

Attorneys knowledgeable in Texas noncompete agreement law can help workers in the state who are trying to decide whether to sign a noncompete agreement or are facing legal issues in relation to a noncompete agreement they previously signed with understanding what impacts Texas noncompete agreement law has on their situation. Such attorneys can also provide such employees with guidance on how they may want to proceed given their current situation.

Source: Occupational Health & Safety, "Obama Administration Eying Non-Compete Agreements," May 9, 2016

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