Hate your current job? Maybe you don’t hate it, but you want to leave? Have a non-compete?
Before you call our office and ask us to review your contract, this is what you need to do:
1. REVIEW YOUR CONTRACT – does it say that Virginia law applies? If so, we can help.
2. DON’T TELL ANYBODY – don’t tell your friend at work you are thinking of leaving – don’t tell anyone at work!
3. DON’T PLAN YOUR NEW BUSINESS, AT WORK – I thought this was obvious, but sadly – I was wrong. When you leave, they will sweep your computer – any emails you sent about your new business, business plans drafted – websites searched, will become your employer’s evidence against you in a breach of contract or tortuous interference case.
4. FIND OUT WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO OTHER EMPLOYEES WHO LEFT – do you know there have been 4 folks who left, competed, and were not sued? That’s good news – try to quietly find out what has happened to other employees.
5. SAVE MONEY – even if your employer sues you, and the court finds either (1) the contract was invalid or (2) you didn’t breach it – you will have to pay a good deal of $ in attorneys fees defending yourself, and unless your contract has an attorneys fee provision in it, you will not likely get repayment for what you have spent.
6. BE ORGANIZED – in Virginia, a Breach of contract claim can be brought in 5 years of the breach – which means, you could be sued for something that happened many years ago. Keep records, emails, contact names etc – any doubt in your mind? Be organized.
HAVE SOMEONE look at the contract. It may be over broad. it may be invalid – it may however, be binding – and if so, we would hate for you to spend time and money defending a lawsuit, only to be told by the Court, you can’t compete after all!