I must admit, I love that technology allows our office to see who is searching for legal help online regarding non-compete agreements in Virginia.

A few weekends ago, there were many searches about non-compete agreements and a certain occupation, in a certain town. Lets say the search was for “plumbers, how to get out of your non-compete in Roanoke.”

The same day, I saw the following search: “How to enforce non-compete against plumber breaching non-compete in Roanoke.”

Is there anyway to prove that the employer knew the plumber was in breach and was looking for an attorney to help enforce the agreement? NO. Can I prove that the searches were done by Employer/Employee – over the same non-compete agreement? Nope. But my gut tells me it was the same agreement because it happens frequently. Employees think they have planned when they do an Internet search the week they are quitting. They don’t realize that employers are working hard to stop them before that even happens.

If you have a non-compete, and you are “planning” an exit of some kind, you must be diligent about knowing your rights etc. You must plan ahead. You cannot wait until the last minute, because frankly, your Employer is hiring an attorney and trying to stop you.

How do I know? Because I can see the Internet searches and I take the phone calls.

Don’t wait to get help on your non-compete agreement. If you act before you seek advice, there may be very little we can do to help you.

Lauren Ellerman

Lauren Ellerman

In 2011, Lauren Ellerman was named "Young Lawyer of the Year" by the Roanoke Bar Association for her work in the community. To speak with Lauren about your personal injury case, contact her at