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If my non compete is for a term of 3 years can the business

Customer Question

If my non compete is for a term of 3 years can the business truly hold me to that time frame in the state of Minnesota.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Business Law
Expert:  Roger replied 4 years ago.
Minnesota allows such agreements. But a judge can void or alter an agreement with an unreasonable duration or restrictions.

Generally, 2-3 years is considered reasonable in duration. Geographical or other restrictions is where many non-compete agreements fail because the business asks for too much. The least critized restriction is that the employee cannot solicit clients/customers away from the business. If that's the case, the agreement would stand.

If there is a geographic restriction, it has to be restricted to the normal trade area of the business. It can't cover an entire region of the country, etc.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
So this an issue that might go to court and then I have to hope a judge allows me to work for another party. I have been away from this company for a period of 8 months and have just been asked by an investor to open my own store. In a court of law what is the max they could hold me to time wise??? Thanks
Expert:  Roger replied 4 years ago.
2-3 years is viewed as a reasonable timeframe. However, the restriction is where you can create some confusion. My suggestion is that you have an attorney write a letter demanding that the company voluntarily release you from the agreement due to the overbroad restrictions, and if it will not, you'll sue to have this done. Hopefully, this will open the channels of communication to reach a settlement.

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