As an employee of a company, there may come a time when you are presented with a non-compete agreement. This is a legal contract that prohibits you from working for a competing company in the same field for a certain period of time after leaving your current job. Non-compete agreements are common in many industries, including the state of Florida.

The state of Florida has specific laws and regulations regarding non-compete agreements. Florida Statute 542.335 states that non-compete agreements are enforceable as long as they are reasonable in duration, geographic scope, and type of employment. This means that the agreement cannot be too restrictive, and must not prevent the employee from finding work in the same field.

The duration of a non-compete agreement is typically limited to the time necessary to protect the legitimate interests of the employer. In Florida, this is generally considered to be no more than two years. The geographic scope of the agreement must also be reasonable. It should not prohibit the employee from working in an entire state or region. Instead, the scope of the agreement should be limited to the area where the employer operates, or where the employee worked.

The type of employment is also an important consideration when drafting a non-compete agreement. The agreement must protect the employer`s legitimate business interests, but it cannot prevent the employee from working in an unrelated field. For example, if a salesperson leaves a company, the non-compete agreement should only apply to the sale of the company`s products, not to the sale of any other products.

If an employee violates a non-compete agreement, the employer may seek damages or injunctive relief. This can be a costly and time-consuming process. To avoid this, it is important for both the employer and the employee to fully understand the terms of the non-compete agreement before signing it. It is also a good idea for the employee to consult with an attorney to ensure that the agreement is fair and reasonable.

In conclusion, non-compete agreements are a common practice in many industries, including the state of Florida. These agreements must be reasonable in duration, geographic scope, and type of employment in order to be enforceable. Both employers and employees should fully understand the terms of the agreement before signing, and it is always a good idea to consult with an attorney. By following these guidelines, both parties can ensure that their legitimate interests are protected.