Non-Solicitation Agreement Attorneys Serving Miami-Dade County & Beyond
A non-solicitation agreement is a contract in which an employee agrees not to solicit a company’s clients, customers, employees, or contractors for his or her own benefit or for the benefit of a competitor, after leaving the company. In Florida, non-solicitation agreements are generally enforceable, subject to defenses. For example, the scope of the non-solicitation requirement and whether the employer can demonstrate a legitimate business interest for the non-solicitation. The requirements and limitations of non-solicitation agreements are based upon case law as well as a detailed statute, Fla. Stat. § 542.335.
In order to enforce a non-solicitation agreement, a party must show that the contractually specified restraint is reasonably necessary to protect a legitimate business interest. Under Florida law, a legitimate business interest includes trade secrets, confidential information that does not otherwise qualify as a trade secret, a substantial relationship with specific prospective or existing clients, patients, or customers, and client or customer goodwill associated with an ongoing relationship.
The person opposing enforcement must establish that the contractually specified restraint is overbroad, overlong, or otherwise not reasonably necessary to protect a legitimate business interest. If a contractually specified restraint is overbroad or not reasonably necessary to protect a legitimate business interest, Florida law requires a court to modify the restraint and grant only the relief reasonably necessary to protect an interest. This is commonly referred to as “blue-penciling the agreement.”
Courts in Florida presume that any restraint in time which is 6 months or less is reasonable, while also presuming as unreasonable any restraint in time that is more than 2 years in duration. In order to be enforceable, a non-solicitation agreement must be in writing and signed by the person against whom enforcement is sought.
Also, in determining the enforceability of a non-solicitation agreement, Florida law does not allow courts to consider any individual hardship that might result from enforcing an otherwise valid non-solicitation agreement. However, courts must determine whether enforcement of a non-solicitation agreement will impact public health, safety, and/or welfare.
Lawyers from BT Law Group have extensive experience drafting and enforcing non-solicitation agreements as well as advising employers, executives, professionals, managers, and hourly workers about the interpretation of, and pitfalls associated with, non-solicitation agreements. Contact the attorneys at BT Law Group for a consultation.