Is My Non-Compete Agreement Valid? | What You Should Know

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Non-compete agreements are one of the most commonly used contracts by employers. Because of this, it is important to understand the nuances of these agreements. Continue reading to learn more and reach out to a skilled Midlothian employment attorney to discuss your non-compete agreement. 

What is a non-compete agreement in Virginia?

A non-compete agreement is a legal tool that is used between an employer and an employee. The purpose of this contract is to prevent an employee from using trade secrets, business practices, and ideas acquired through their place of employment to create their own business or join a competing institution in the same area.

In most cases, a non-compete agreement is produced by employers because without one, they risk hurting their business in the event that an employee was to take important information that they acquired from their company to use at a directly competing company. This also would apply if the employee left and formed their own competing company.

What does a non-compete agreement require to be valid?

In order for a non-compete agreement to be considered valid in Virginia, a few qualifications must be met. An enforceable non-compete agreement in Virginia must abide by the following criteria:

  • A valid non-compete agreement must not place an unfair time limitation on the worker
  • A valid non-compete agreement must not violate Virginia public policy
  • A valid non-compete agreement must not place unfair geographical limitations on the worker

Furthermore, a proper non-compete must be narrowly tailored to the kind of work that the employee conducted for the employer.

It is also important to recognize that according to Virginia law, it is against the law for employers to mandate employees classified as making lower wages to enter into a non-compete agreement. Effective in 2020, this rule involved any employee making approximately $52,000 or less (this figure may be subject to change), under Va. Code § 40.1-28.7:8. Essentially, this means that a non-compete agreement must be no broader than is necessary to cover the employer’s business interest under Virginia law.

What if my non-compete is unfair?

Unfortunately, there are some cases where a non-compete agreement can be deemed overbroad or unfair. If you think that your non-compete agreement violates any of the above requirements, you will need to retain the services of an experienced Chesterfield County employment agreement attorney that can assess your case and determine the best solution for you. Do not wait to reach out to our firm to discuss the details of your situation and your legal options.


At Passero Employment Law, we understand it is difficult to confront problems in the workplace or face litigation. With that in mind, we take a solutions-oriented approach to our representation – focusing on the right process and the right solution for each of our clients. If you need help with an employment law matter in the state of Virginia, you can count on Passero Employment Law to effectively represent your interests. If you would like to discuss your matter, please contact Passero Employment Law today.

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