How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask UKSolicitorJA Your Own Question

UKSolicitorJA
UKSolicitorJA, Solicitor
Category: UK Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 3937
Experience:  solicitor
62162956
Type Your UK Employment Law Question Here...
UKSolicitorJA is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I have a restrictive covenant in my contract but the wording

Customer Question

I have a restrictive covenant in my contract but the wording is very vague, can you please provide me with advice on whether my employer has the right to enforce it? I work for an IT consultancy, I am working as a Junior project manager (although my title with my employer is project coordinator, so at a junior level so I am not in a senior position), currently working for one of their clients and have been there for almost 5 years. The client has appraoched me with a position building on my experience within the client. The client is an international investment bank, and until recently the project that I have worked for is funded by the UK side of the bank. The new position is funded by India division - the advice i need is India have approached me to take up this position with them through an alternative contracting agency, as the employer I currently work for is not a supplier on their list of suppliers used (unlike in the UK). As my employer is not an option to provide this service to the bank, am I in breach of contract if I take up the offer via an alternative agency? I have contacted my employer to discuss this, I am still waiting for a meeting with my manager to discuss this matter with them. The details of the restriction are as follows: 1. Restrictive Covenants 1.1. You shall not for a period of six months after the day your employment terminates (Termination Date) either directly or indirectly and whether on your own behalf or on behalf of any other business, person, partnership, firm, company or other body which is wholly or partly in competition with any business carried on by the Company or any Group Company and whether directly or indirectly: 1.1.1. canvass, solicit or attempt to entice away from the Company or any Group Company the business of any person, partnership, firm, company or other body for whom the Company or any Group Company has provided goods or services who or which to your knowledge is and has been a customer, client or agent or supplier to the Company or any Group Company during the period of 12 months immediately preceding the Termination Date and with whom you had direct business dealings or personal contact on behalf of the Company or any Group Company during that period; or 1.1.2. canvass, solicit or attempt to entice away from the Company or any Group Company the business of any person, firm, company or organisation with whom the Company or any Group Company has had any negotiations or material discussions with a view to doing business with the Company or any Group Company for the supply of goods or services by the Company or any Group Company during the period of 12 months immediately preceding the Termination Date and with whom you had direct business dealings or personal contact on behalf of the Company or any Group Company during that period; or 1.1.3. undertake to provide in competition with the Company or any Group Company any service or manufacture or supply any product similar to those with which you were concerned in the course of your employment during the period of 12 months immediately preceding the Termination Date to or for any person who is or was a customer, client or agent of or supplier to (or who had regular business dealings with) the Company or any Group Company during the period of 12 months immediately preceding the Termination Date and with whom you had direct dealings or personal contact in the course of your employment during that period; or 1.1.4. be engaged by any client of the Company or any Group Company to whom you have provided services on behalf of the Company or any Group Company during the period of 12 months immediately preceding the Termination Date; or 1.1.5. solicit or entice away any person who: 1.1.5.1. is a Key Person unless such person had ceased to be employed or engaged by the Company or any Group Company more than 3 months prior to the Termination Date (whether or not such person would thereby breach his or her employment or appointment terms). “Key Person” means any person who is or was at any time during the 12 month period immediately preceding the Termination Date a senior employee or director of the Company or any Group Company or who is or was engaged by the Company or any Group Company as a consultant in an equivalent capacity; or 1.1.5.2. by reason of their knowledge of trade secrets or confidential information of the Company or any Group Company or knowledge or influence over the clients, customers or suppliers of the Company or any Group Company is likely to be able to assist or benefit a business which competes or proposes to compete with the Company or any Group Company; 1.1.5.3. and in either case with whom you had personal dealings in the course of your employment within the period of 12 months immediately preceding the Termination Date.


 


I have a few more paragraphs covering this in my contract, which I can also send as I could not upload the file


 


Thanks

Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: UK Employment Law
Expert:  UKSolicitorJA replied 2 years ago.

Hello,

I would first start by advising you that only the courts can authoritatively rule on whether or not the restrictive covenants are indeed illegal and unenforceable or not.

However, in my opinion, you would not be bound by the clauses which you have set out as such clauses are generally void and unenforceable as being anti competitive and in restraint of trade.

Your employer would need to justify to the courts that it is a reasonable covenant and to protect a legitimate business interest e.g. client connections, confidential information, maintaining a stable workforce – and not simply to stifle or prevent competition.

I suggest you read this for further information: http://www.employmentlaw.co.uk/restrictive_covenants_what_is_enforceable.asp

All the best. Please leave feedback

Customer: replied 2 years ago.


Hi, thank you for you response.


 


This is the remainder of the details in the contract if you need to check:


1.1.1. For the avoidance of doubt, none of the restrictions contained in clause 26 shall prohibit any activities by you which are not in direct or indirect competition with any business being carried on by the Company or any Group Company at the Termination Date.


1.1.2. At no time after the termination of your employment will you directly or indirectly represent yourself as being interested in or employed by or in any way connected with the Company or any Group Company, other than as a former employee of the Company.



1.1.3. If you apply for or are offered a new employment, appointment or engagement, before entering into any related contract you will bring the terms of clause 26 (Restrictive covenants) and clause 31 (Confidential Information) to the attention of a third party proposing to directly or indirectly employ, appoint or engage you.


1.1.4. If the Company exercises its rights pursuant to clause 25 (Termination and Notice Period) the duration of the restrictions set out in this paragraph 26 shall be reduced by the period during which the Company required you to carry out no duties.


 


In your opinion I would not be bound by the clause.


Would you suggest it would still be best for me to speak to my employer prior to making my decision?


If so - I would like to mention that I have had some advice and I am not bound by the clause.


Other than the employer having to justify that the convenant is reasonable to enforce, are there any other parts of the clause that i can use to justify/reinforce my decision?


 


Thanks

Expert:  UKSolicitorJA replied 2 years ago.
Hello,

The additional clauses you set out make no difference. You should still try and negotiate amicably with the company and get them to waive the clauses, if not, I do not seem going to court to stop you from going ahead anyway.

All the best -please leave feedback
UKSolicitorJA, Solicitor
Satisfied Customers: 3937
Experience: solicitor
UKSolicitorJA and other UK Employment Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Other than the employer having to justify that the convenant is reasonable to enforce, are there any other parts of the clause that i can use to justify/reinforce my decision when I speak to my employer?

Thanks
Expert:  UKSolicitorJA replied 2 years ago.
THIS ANSWER IS LOCKED!
You can view this answer by clicking here to Register or Login and paying $3.
If you've already paid for this answer, simply Login.

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • A quick response, a succinct and helpful answer in simple English. I believe I can now confront the counter party with confidence -- worth the 30 bucks! Rick Leeds, UK
< Last | Next >
  • A quick response, a succinct and helpful answer in simple English. I believe I can now confront the counter party with confidence -- worth the 30 bucks! Rick Leeds, UK
  • I did not know a French Law service existed and I was very impressed with the speed of reply --- very professional. Many thanks! Ms. Baker Alfafar, Spain
  • Thank you so much for your help. Your answers were really useful and came back so quickly. Great! Maggie USA
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex Los Angeles, CA
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP Hesperia, CA
  • I couldn't be more satisfied! This is the site I will always come to when I need a second opinion. Justin Kernersville, NC
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Ben Jones

    Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    7575
    Expert in UK Employment Law
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/venkoj/2010-02-20_133027_ben_pic.jpg Ben Jones's Avatar

    Ben Jones

    Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    7575
    Expert in UK Employment Law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/taratill/2010-03-09_111600_phpsik04M_c2AM.jpg Jenny McKenzie's Avatar

    Jenny McKenzie

    Satisfied Customers:

    1738
    10 Years of experience in Employment Law and HR
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/UK/UKSolicitorJA/2011-9-26_165252_lawyer.64x64.jpg UKSolicitorJA's Avatar

    UKSolicitorJA

    Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    377
    solicitor
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RE/Remus2004/2012-4-22_93111_2bigstockPortraitOfConfidentFemaleL6943985.64x64.jpg Jo C.'s Avatar

    Jo C.

    Barrister

    Satisfied Customers:

    150
    Over 5 years in practice.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/TO/touchwoodsden/JA.64x64.jpg Law Denning's Avatar

    Law Denning

    Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    82
    PGD Law. 20 years legal profession, 6 as partner in High Street practice
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/Topadvisor/2010-5-18_221239_Me.jpg John Knox's Avatar

    John Knox

    Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    71
    Solicitor and Advocate
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/JO/Josh2010/2012-4-29_19490_GettyImages80121770B.64x64.jpg Joshua's Avatar

    Joshua

    Laywer

    Satisfied Customers:

    46
    LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice
 
 
 
Chat Now With A Solicitor
UKSolicitorJA
UKSolicitorJA
390 Satisfied Customers
solicitor