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socrateaser, Attorney
Category: Business Law
Satisfied Customers: 39043
Experience:  Retired (mostly)
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I work in California as an Independent Contractor at a beauty

Customer Question

I work in California as an Independent Contractor at a beauty salon. 7 years in and I have to leave the current salon due to emotional abuse, I can no longer work in the toxic environment. I signed a non-compete when I started and it states I cant' work within 5 miles for 2 years of termination. I live down the street from work and I have an established clientele, I am going to rent a station around the corner so I can continue to take care of my clients and work in a peaceful environment. I am fearful of a lawsuit but I am left with no choice. Is there a statute of limitations?? Does a non-compete become enforceable with independent contractors?? If I worked 5 miles away I would loose my clientele and I couldn't support myself.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Business Law
Expert:  socrateaser replied 4 years ago.

Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code 16600 provides that all contracts in restraint of trade are void as against public policy. It doesn't matter if you are an employee or an independent contractor -- no person can restrain another from competing -- with one exception, which is where one person sells substantially all of the good will of a business to someone else, and agrees not to compete after the sale.

Your current salon owner cannot prevent you from competing, regardless of the terms and conditions of your contract.

Hope this helps.