November 30, 2005
Do Noncompetes Survive Job Changes?
Where an employer requires an employee sign a noncompete agreement, what happens when the employee’s job changes, as by promotion or reassignment? According to Wilfred J. Benoit, Jr., James W. Nagle, Robert M. Hale and Bradford J. Smith of Boston’s Goodwin Procter LLP, a number of lower court Massachusetts cases have suggested that changes in the job or employment status will nullify the clauses, and that employers must get new agreements signed when the employee’s job responsibilities change. Other courts, they say, have rejected a per se rule.
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