Employment Law

Employment law questions? Ask an employment lawyer.

Ask a Lawyer,
Get an Answer ASAP!

I have a question regarding a non-compete agreement. I

Customer Question
worked for a construction company...
I have a question regarding a non-compete agreement. I worked for a construction company doing home improvement sales. Due to differences in opinion, we parted ways in Sept of 2015. I had applied to another company that is also in the construction field and my previous owner wrote a release of my non-compete to my new employer. The letter releasing me said: Attn "Company X". It simply said that "I C.O.O. of Company Y have hereby released Kyle ****** from his non-compete. In no where in the release form does it mention that they were only releasing me to Company X. The letter itself starts off with "To whom it may concern". Since then, Company X and I have parted ways. I found a new job that provided me a promotion to sales manager. However my old employer is trying to enforce the original non-compete. Looking for some advice.
Submitted: 2 years ago.Category: Employment Law
Show More
Show Less
Ask Your Own Employment Law Question
Answered in 8 minutes by:
3/21/2016
Employment Lawyer: Ely, Counselor at Law replied 2 years ago
Ely
Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 103,583
Experience: Years of experience in running a medium sized law firm.
Verified

Hello and welcome to JustAnswer. Please note: This is general information for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein, and no attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an expert on this site. By continuing, you confirm that you understand and agree to these terms.

I am sorry to hear about this situation. In these kinds of cases, a Court would read the release based on the following subjective factors:

-what it believes the intended meaning to have been,

-the common translation of the verbiage, and

-the common language in the industry.

If Y wanted to limit the release to X only, then the letter would have (arguably) said that the release is conditional on Kyle working for X only. However, the release is general. Thus arguably, it simply RELEASES the individual from the non-compete all together.

The problem is saying it does not make it so. One has two choices here:

-simply continue working, and hope that Y will simply give up. If they sue, then one can argue that the waiver constitutes a FULL release and the court will make a determination; or

-not wait and file a DECLARATORY JUDGMENT, asking the Court to decide what the release means NOW, without waiting for them to sue. The problem is that this can take a few months just to get to the Court after filing.

Perhaps one may wish to ask their new company's attorney to send a letter stating that the release is being interpreted as the release being complete, and that any action by Y would be immediately rebuked and attorney fees may be asked. Or one's own attorney can write such a letter, as well. Hopefully this would be enough to have Y simply back off without litigation being needed.

Another important factor: an ambiguous clause is often interpreted against the draftor. As such, this gives someone in Kyle's position an advantage in the court's interpretation of the clause.

I hope this helps and clarifies. Please use the SEND or REPLY button to keep chatting, or please RATE when finished. You may always ask follow ups at no charge after rating. Kindly rate my answer as one of TOP THREE FACES/STARS and then SUBMIT, as this is how experts get credit for our time. Rating my answer the bottom two faces/stars (or failing to submit the rating) does not give me credit and reflects poorly on me, even if my answer is correct. I work very hard to formulate an informative and honest answer for you; please reciprocate my good faith with a positive rating.

Ask Your Own Employment Law Question
Employment Lawyer: Ely, Counselor at Law replied 2 years ago
Hello again. This is a courtesy check in to see if you needed anything else in regards ***** ***** question because you never responded or replied positively. I am simply touching base. Let me know. Thanks!
Ask Your Own Employment Law Question
Was this answer helpful?

How JustAnswer works

step-image
Describe your issueThe assistant will guide you
step-image
Chat 1:1 with an employment lawyerLicensed Experts are available 24/7
step-image
100% satisfaction guaranteeGet all the answers you need
Ask Ely Your Own Question
Ely
Ely
Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 103,583
103,583 Satisfied Customers
Experience: Years of experience in running a medium sized law firm.

Ely is online now

A new question is answered every 9 seconds

How JustAnswer works:

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

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:

I must thank you all for such a positive and knowledgeable Expert in your Employment Law category. She has provided much relief and answers for me in the midst of dealing with a case. I am totally pleased with her customer service and care.

MildredWashington, DC

Excellent direction from Socrateaser to help me preserve and pursue my rights as a proud American who has become unemployed in this messed-up economic downfall. Thank you

Happy CustomerDenver, CO

Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises!

Gary B.Edmond, OK

My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer.

EricRedwood City, CA

I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight.

MichaelWichita, KS

PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent.

Three H.Houston, TX

Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!!

ElaineAtlanta, GA

< Previous | Next >

Meet the Experts:

Allen M., Esq.

Allen M., Esq.

Employment Lawyer

13,334 satisfied customers

Employment/Labor Law Litigation

Marsha411JD

Marsha411JD

Lawyer

12,490 satisfied customers

Licensed Attorney with 29 yrs. exp in Employment Law

Infolawyer

Infolawyer

Lawyer

12,478 satisfied customers

Licensed attorney helping employers and employees.

JB Umphrey

JB Umphrey

Lawyer

6,273 satisfied customers

Assisting employees and employers for over 14 years.

John

John

Employment Lawyer

4,029 satisfied customers

Exclusively practice labor and employment law.

Dimitry K., Esq.

Dimitry K., Esq.

Attorney

3,007 satisfied customers

I provide employment and discrimination law advice in my own practice.

ScottyMacEsq

ScottyMacEsq

Lawyer

2,893 satisfied customers

Licensed Texas General Practice Attorney

< Previous | Next >

Related Employment Law Questions
Was wanting to inquire about a non-compete. I was hired by a
Hey Pearl was wanting to inquire about a non-compete. I was hired by a cleaning companying back in Sept. 2011 - the owner decided to terminate my employment after 2 years. In Dec. 2015 he hired me bac… read more
Eric Y., Esq.
Eric Y., Esq.
Law/J.D.
437 satisfied customers
I signed a non compete letter, in Feb of 2017, in the state
I signed a non compete letter, in Feb of 2017, in the state of Ga. I was then released in October of 2017. I was not given any additional compensation for signing the non compete. Can my x employer co… read more
Lucy
Lucy
Juris Doctor
130 satisfied customers
Team, I am working for X company as full time employee for
Hi Team ,I am working for X company as full time employee for my client Y as a contractor . I am on H1-B . My client is having 2 portfolio A and B . I am working as contractor in portfolio B . Now my … read more
Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq.
Attorney At Law
Doctoral Degree
244 satisfied customers
I am working for a client x through an employer y. Now the
I am working for a client x through an employer y. Now the client x has terminated the service contract with my employer y. … read more
Asad Rahman
Asad Rahman
Attorney
J.D.
2,526 satisfied customers
I reside and am a resident of California. I have been
I reside and am a resident of California. I have been offered a position in California that have asked me to sign a Non Compete clause. If I ever leave the company in California; and work for its comp… read more
LegalPro54
LegalPro54
Doctoral Degree
1,258 satisfied customers
I am working as a consultant X and placed as a consultant at
I am working as a consultant for Company X and placed as a consultant at Company Y's office. I have a non-compete signed with Company X that doesn't allow me to work for Company Y until 6 months after… read more
Sam
Sam
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
10,701 satisfied customers
Please see the clause below signed by an employee of Syntel
HI: Please see the clause below signed by an employee of Syntel Inc, USA working out of a client location of company X in Phoenix. The person who signed this is in Phoenix, and is contemplating accept… read more
Dimitry K., Esq.
Dimitry K., Esq.
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
3,007 satisfied customers
I have a no compete contract signed june 2013 not by owner
I have a no compete contract signed june 2013 not by owner but office manager in the state of louisiana is there a way to get our of it… read more
John
John
Employment Lawyer
Doctoral Degree
4,029 satisfied customers
I am in pharmaceutical sales and have been offered a
I am in pharmaceutical sales and have been offered a specialty account manager job with a competing company. Here is what my non compete states ... "Employee shall not directly or indirectly, during t… read more
Loren
Loren
578 satisfied customers
I'm employed by company X to work Y, I have signed
I'm employed by company X to work for Client Y, I have signed a Non Compete while I joined Company X in New Jersey. Later since our Client Y moved to North Carolina I moved along with my Client Y. Now… read more
Dimitry K., Esq.
Dimitry K., Esq.
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
3,007 satisfied customers
Hi, I joined a company seven years ago as a VP of sales in
Hi, I joined a company seven years ago as a VP of sales in MA. We manufacture commodity electrical items. December of 2012 the new French Snr VP based in France told me he is eliminating my position a… read more
retirementlawyer
retirementlawyer
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
1,606 satisfied customers
I am a sales rep at company A (specific legal materials (books/CDs)
I am a sales rep at company A (specific legal materials (books/CDs) selling specifically to attorneys signed a non-compete with them at start of employment looking at a job with company B (offering cl… read more
Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq.
Attorney At Law
Doctoral Degree
244 satisfied customers
If I signed a non compete agreement as a condition for a promotion
If I signed a non compete agreement as a condition for a promotion after being employed and later the my employer changes the terms of my promotion, i.e. eliminated some of the benefits that came with… read more
retirementlawyer
retirementlawyer
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
1,606 satisfied customers
Hi, I want to have your counselling on the below mentioned
Hi, I want to have your counselling on the below mentioned scenario situation which I am facing: I am an employee of a company 'X' and am on H1B visa. This is a Virginia based company. I was placed on… read more
MDLaw
MDLaw
Attorney
Post-Doctoral Degree
358 satisfied customers
Hi, I am currently working on government project as a contractor
Hi, I am currently working on government project as a contractor through vendor X for 6 month contract period, initial contract ending on 31st august. My employer Y signed master service agreement wit… read more
LawTalk
LawTalk
Attorney at Law
Juris Doctor
3,071 satisfied customers
I quit company X and went to company Y. I had a non-compete
I quit company X and went to company Y. I had a non-compete which stated I couldn't work for a competitor for one year. Company X served me with papers that claimed Company Y is competitive and a brea… read more
Allen M., Esq.
Allen M., Esq.
Employment Lawyer
Juris Doctor, Cum Laude
13,334 satisfied customers
I took a job 3 months ago as a Sales Manager at a new company
I took a job 3 months ago as a Sales Manager at a new company (X). I took a demotion 1 month ago to a sales position with a big paycut. The company (Y) I worked for prior to taking this position offer… read more
JBaxLaw
JBaxLaw
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
8,080 satisfied customers
If a person signed a non-compete agreement while working at
If a person signed a non-compete agreement while working at Company X, but several years later (while still an employee) Company X was acquired by Company Y. Does that affect the non-compete enforceab… read more
Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq.
Attorney At Law
Doctoral Degree
244 satisfied customers

DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

Show MoreShow Less

Ask Your Question

x