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Non-Compete Agreements
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Arlington Heights Lawyers for Non-Compete Agreements

Experienced Business Law Attorneys Assisting Employers in Schaumburg, Hoffman Estates, and Cook County

Arlington Heights Non-Compete Agreement Lawyer

In today's increasingly transient work environment, workers tend to change jobs far more often. This has prompted many businesses to use non-compete agreements to protect themselves. Unfortunately, these agreements are not always enforceable in Illinois. For this reason, it is important to work with skilled business law attorneys to help craft an agreement that is valid and fully protects your interests.

At A. Traub & Associates, we have provided skilled guidance and representation for small to medium sized businesses in Arlington Heights and throughout Chicagoland for over 15 years. Our lawyers work closely with our clients to provide the personalized service they deserve. We understand the challenges small businesses face in the 21st Century economy, and we put our experience to work to become essential members of your team. Whether you need in-house counsel, help to craft non-compete or non-disclosure agreements, or representation to favorably resolve employee disputes, we are there in whatever capacity you need us to guide your business toward a positive resolution.

When is a Non-Compete Agreement Valid?

For non-compete agreements to be enforceable, they should contain the three essential elements of a standard contract: offer, acceptance, and consideration.

In other words, a reasonable offer should be given to the employee, the employee must accept the offer, and the employee must receive reasonable consideration for accepting the offer. The challenge is that since employment in Illinois is considered "at will" and terminating employees can generally be done at any time and for any reason, an offer of employment alone is not a reasonable consideration for making a non-compete contract enforceable.

Recent Illinois court rulings have held that for non-compete agreements to be valid, the employee must be employed for a certain length of time. Fifield v. Premier Dealer Services, Inc. (2013) established the standard of two years of employment, absent any other form of consideration. This standard was reaffirmed in McInnis V. OAG Motorcycle Ventures, Inc. (2015), wherein it was ruled that the agreement was not enforceable because the plaintiff (McInnis) was "only" employed by the defendant for 18 months, and no other consideration was given.

In light of these rulings, it is generally advised that for a non-compete agreement to be valid the employer should provide one or both of the following:

  • Continuous employment for a minimum of two years.
  • Additional consideration (such as higher compensation or bonuses) that the employee would not otherwise receive in his/her position.

Contact Our Arlington Heights Attorneys

There are other factors that should be taken into account when crafting non-compete agreements, depending on the specific circumstances of your business. We take the time to learn all about your organization, so we fully understand your needs and goals when reviewing and/or preparing contracts. For a personalized consultation with one of our attorneys, contact our office today. If you are not able to reach us immediately, we make every effort to return your call within 24 hours.

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