I ran across a fun and exciting discussion forum on a roofing website today, about the use of non-compete agreements in the profession. Men (and maybe some gals) in the business have been sharing their experiences, opinions and thoughts as to whether non-competes are enforceable in the industry, what could be considred trade secret, etc.

One contributer, I assume a roofer, wrote:

“What trade secrets are going to be divulged in roofing? A customer list isn’t an issue because by the time a repeat sale comes around, the period following termination or resignation has long passed. Any savvy attorney would have any attempt by the former employer squashed in a heartbeat and have valid reason to counter sue for a law suit.”

Yikes. I hope this guy’s risk tolerance is not prevelant in the profession but perhaps it goes hand in hand with heights. Nothing scares him. Sadly, he is not correct. At least under Virginia law, even the most savy attorney cannot always squash a lawsuit in a heartbeat, and in most cases, I can’t find valid reasons to counter sue. I like his approach, but my experience tells me he is not right.

  • Lawsuits are not easily squashed.
  • You can’t always file a counter suit.
  • Sometimes you get stuck in expensive litigation for months to no end.

So please, always call an attorney in your state. I would hate for the optomistic email posting of a guy who is clearly not afraid of much, lead you astray.

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