We get this question a lot. The client signs a non-compete agreement when hired 4 years ago and then is terminated by the employer. It doesn’t matter if you were “fired” or “furloughed” or “terminated” or what ever you want to call it….the legality and enforceability of the non-compete is usually not effected.
In determining whether a non-competition agreement is valid and enforceable, Virginia courts will apply the following criteria:
(1). Is the restraint from the standpoint of the employer reasonable in the sense that it is not greater than is necessary to protect the employer in some legitimate business interest?
(2). From the standpoint of the employee, is the restraint reasonable in the sense that it is not unduly harsh and oppressive in curtailing his legitimate efforts to earn a livelihood?
(3). Is the restraint reasonable from the standpoint of a sound public policy?