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Searching for an executive-level opportunity when you are subject to a noncompete agreement can be nerve-wracking. Making use of your industry experience and contacts is logically the best way to advance your career, but it can seem that your hands are tied by the restrictions of the contracts. By working with an attorney and an executive recruiter, you can safely navigate your search for a new position without breaching your noncompete.

Choose an Experienced Employment Attorney

A legal expert well versed in employment law can help you answer critical questions that will keep you out of hot water.

Is the noncompete agreement valid and enforceable?

Laws regarding noncompetes vary from state to state. For example, in California, such agreements are rarely legally upheld. Your attorney will be able to advise you on the laws particular to your state.

Was the agreement entered into in good faith?

If the employer misled you when you signed it, or was in any way not forthcoming about your job or the company, you may be able to have the agreement terminated.

What geographical areas does the agreement cover?

Some companies may be content with prohibiting you from working in your industry locally. Others may wish to extend their reach nationally or even internationally.

What companies are included?

Noncompetes can prevent you from working just with specific competitors or disqualify you from participating in the industry entirely.

How long are you subject to the agreement?

The time range can be anywhere from a few months to several years. Historically, prohibitively long noncompetes are more difficult to enforce legally.

What recourse do you have?

If you are prohibited from earning a living, an employment attorney may be able to help you get compensation in the form of severance or a settlement to provide you with a source of income until the agreement expires.

Protect yourself before you sign your next noncompete. Ask your attorney to examine it to ensure that it’s not unreasonably broad. Limit the parameters of the agreement where you can. Negotiate what the contract covers and how long its duration.

Work With an Executive Recruiter

Once your attorney confirms the terms of the agreement, working with an experienced executive recruiter can prevent you from violating them. They can tightly target your search to appropriate opportunities and reach out to companies on your behalf without breaching your agreement.

Partner with an executive search consultant who understands your field and the intricacies of working within the constraints of a noncompete agreement. You’ll find a rewarding executive position and peace of mind. Contact the recruiting team at BrainWorks today.


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