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Noncompetes are an important tool in the protection of trade secrets and customer relationships. Around since the middle ages, noncompetes have been subject to a basic legal framework established in England in 1711. In the United States, noncompetes have been regulated exclusively by states for more than 200 years. But their use, impact, and enforceability are now being reevaluated. Over the past decade, research has emerged questioning the impacts and utility of noncompetes, and the majority of states have engaged in some level of reevaluation of their noncompete laws, with nearly half of the states modifying their laws through legislation. Further, starting in 2015, the federal government has been weighing in, most recently through three pending bills to ban or limit the use of noncompetes and an Executive Order encouraging action by the FTC to curtail the use of “unfair” noncompetes. Are noncompetes really necessary? What will happen if noncompetes are banned? Will innovation improve? Will wages rise? Will inflation rise? Will alternative litigation rise? Will the use of other restrictive covenants increase?
Gain insight into how the issues are viewed from the perspective of in-house lawyers, professors, and others in the field, and what support is available for those perspectives.
Experts will discuss:
- The policy, pros, and cons of noncompetes (9 minutes)
- The state of legislative activity and public opinion (8 minutes)
- The state of the academic research on noncompetes (20 minutes)
- What is likely to happen at state and federal levels (8 minutes)
- How to plan for anticipated changes, including up to a complete ban on noncompetes (15 minutes)
Any lawyer that assists clients in evaluating, enforcing, and defending against noncompetes and other restrictive covenants, anyone involved in the hiring of employees, and anyone responsible for an organization’s internal hiring policies or lobbying on related issues will find this presentation instructive.