Hey. You. Virginia Employee.

  • Is your non-compete valid?
  • Is it enforceable?
  • Can you get sued by your employer if you leave?

All great questions, non of which I can answer without taking the time to review your agreement and discussing the details of the situation with you.

Clients will say “it is only 1 sentence – can’t you just tell me whether it is valid?”

Sure. I could do that. If I wanted to lose my bar license and get sued when I provide an opinion on a complicated business relationship based on my quick review of 14 words.

So no. I won’t do that.

Virginia courts will decide these on a case by case basis, taking into consideration the facts, the law, and the details of your case. So when Dan and I review a non-compete agreement and provide advice, we have to do the same.

Oh, and the answer to the third question is – YES. Your old employer could sue you.

HE/SHE/IT could sue you even if you don’t have an employment contract. They can sue you for a bunch of great stuff like breaching duties, interfering, trade secrets etc.

They can even sue you and allege the above with no actual proof. Maybe it is unethical but there is little you can do Mr. Employee but do your best not to get sued, and ride it out while fighting back in Court.

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