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Texas Law For Enforcing Non-Compete Agreements

Non-compete agreements and non-solicitation agreements are tools that companies utilize to protect from employees competition in the same industry. The laws have changed throughout the years are the result of several major lawsuits. This resulted in strict requirements to make true non-compete agreements enforceable. Texas Non-Compete Agreement Attorney Richard Weaver represent businesses seeking to enforce these restrictive agreements against employees that violate the non-compete agreements and non-solicitation agreements they have signed. The Texas law governing these binding agreements shows the specific restrains that allow a business to protect its intellectual property rights. Along these same lines, many of the non-competition agreements that the attorneys at The Weaver Law Firm review are non-valid. Usually, a former employee has presented the contract to the firm for a review and consultation regarding the non-enforceability of the purported agreement.

Non-Competition agreements are very typical for employees to sign. Through these agreements, employers attempt to protect their proprietary rights to customer lists, business research, scientific innovations and inventions. This confidential information may be the life-blood to the survival of a business. If done incorrectly, these agreements may improperly attempt to restrain employees and executives in their efforts to offer their services to competitors and the free market.

Texas lawyers helped covenant not to compete laws to change on a large scale in June 2011. The effect of this new law is that Texas non-compete agreements previously considered to be invalid now may be enforceable. If you have been presented with a non compete agreement or if you are considering whether to end an employment relationship with a “non-compete agreement,” contact an experienced employment lawyer.

When you signed your employment agreement, did you notice whether there was a non-compete provision towards the end of your employment contract? Perhaps you did not think there was one because there was not a bold title identifying the non-compete provisions. Many Texas professionals, executives, and employees often the non-compete covenant because they are excited about the hiring process and obtaining a new job. It is not until the employee is planning to leave employment when he considers the non-competition agreement. Other times, it is not until post-employment after receiving a threatening letter from the former employer’s lawyer.

What Are Texas Non-Compete Agreements?

A covenant not to compete is an agreement between an employee and an employer that has the purpose to restrict an employee’s post-employment activities related to the type of work the employee can perform after working for the company. Texas non-compete contracts try to prevent an employee from working in the employee’s chosen profession, trade, or industry. They also try to prevent the employee from soliciting a former employer’s customers or hiring the former employer’s employees. Typical accompanying contracts or clause include non-solicitation agreement and non-disclosure agreements (NDAs).

It is the opinion of Texas lawyers that courts generally disfavor non-compete agreements. Many Texas attorneys believe that courts may enforce a non-compete covenant if it is executed for valid consideration, contains reasonable geographic, temporal, and activity restrictions, and protects the employer’s legitimate business interests.

What Are the Legal Requirements to Enforce a Non-Compete Agreement?

Under Texas law there are two main requirements on whether a non-compete agreement is enforceable. The first requirement is that an employee’s promise not to compete must be reasonably related to an interest worthy of the employer’s protection.

Prior to this above referenced law, the employee and employer were required to enter into an agreement with reciprocal promises, and the promise given by the employer must have given rise to the employer’s interest in preventing the employee from competing. The non-compete provision must have been designed to enforce the employee’s promise to the employer in the underlying agreement.

The Texas Supreme Court decided in June 2011, that an employee’s promises must only be reasonably related to or have a factual nexus with an employer’s non-compete agreement.

The second requirement is that a non-compete must contain reasonable restrictions describing the covenant’s geographical limits, restrictive time period, and description of the employee’s activities to be restrained.

In order to determine whether restrictions are reasonable the fact finder may have to consider a complex factual scenario. A judge or jury may also have to examine the employer’s businesses interests and whether they are being protected by the non-compete agreement.

An employer has a better chance of enforcing a non-compete agreement if it provides the employee with confidential information or trade secrets and in return the employee promises not to disclose the employer’s confidential information or trade secrets. The agreement should also have an agreement that the employee will not perform similar duties for a competing business in the same geographic area for a reasonable period of time.

Texas Non-Compete Law and Confidential Information

Under the new Texas non-compete law, the employee’s non-compete promise will become enforceable if and when the employer provides the employee with confidential information. The employer is not required to provide confidential information or other valid consideration at the time the employee signs a Texas covenant not to compete.

How Do Recent Employment Laws Affect Employees?

The good news is that courts are more closely scrutinizing the scope of a covenant’s restrictions under the second requirement. Courts may reform the agreement if a covenant’s restrictions are overly broad. This is in the situations where a court finds a non-compete agreement to be enforceable under the first requirement.

Generally, Texas covenant not to compete laws are complex. It is the area of Texas employment law that can prevent a person from earning a living in the industry or trade that the person loves or went to school to learn. Read your contract before you sign and call an experienced lawyer for a consultation before you sign.

Results come first in business law matters. Our attorneys are experienced in drafting and litigating non-compete and non-solicitation agreements both in employment matters and in relation to the sale of businesses. To have our attorneys review or prepare your non-compete agreement, call us at 713-454-7875 or email our attorneys your questions.

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I have used Mr. Weaver on two occasions. The first case was a rather complicated financial real estate deal gone bad with a former partner. Through his dedication, he accomplished my primary goal and my secondary goal. He took my case to trial and won. I recommend him to all of those who need representation on such issues. Additionally, he also was a kind and understanding individual.

Latigo
Houston, Texas

When my husband and I decided to expand our business and create a new charity organization in Houston, we sought out an attorney who was not only professional, knowledgeable, and timely, but also personable and accessible. Attorney Richard Weaver has exceeded our expectations in all of the categories that were important to us. It is so refreshing to have someone who listens and gives honest advice on how to conduct our business and personal affairs. Mr. Weaver has been with us every step of the way. He was there with us in the beginning stages and gave us advice on everything from becoming incorporated to website content! I love his attention to detail and ability to listen. When my father passed away in 2010, he was right there to walk us through the probate of his will. I felt an immediate ease once I placed those documents in Richard's hands because I knew he'd take care of it all. In all, we will be clients of Richard's for life because we never think twice of who we need to call when we need legal advice and/or services. We consider him a part of both our business and family because he has proven to be trustworthy and dependable. Thanks so much Richard for being more that we could've ever hoped for in an attorney!

Rodney Hampton (Super Bowl Champion, Former New York Giants Running Back)
& Andetria Hampton

Richard and The Weaver Law Firm have been very committed to seeing our case through to success. His diligence in discovery and superior litigation skills helped obtain a favorable award and a very favorable judgment. It's never a pleasant experience to be sued, but we sued back and won. We found a trustworthy attorney and a good friend throughout the experience.

Thai Klam
Remax 360

I would like to thank The Weaver Law Firm. After I was injured from a consumer product, The Weaver Law Firm helped me get compensation I deserved. I was very pleased with the quality, attentiveness and responsiveness of their services. I would gladly recommend this law firm to anyone who has a problem of any kind.

Kimberly Velez
Houston, Texas

It is with great pleasure that I recommend the services of The Weaver Law Firm. I have utilized the firm for over three years. Richard Weaver has provided legal representation crucial to my business. During these years, Richard has served us in various areas that include representing the company, business planning, company formation, litigation and court proceedings. He has a professional and personal commitment to my company. We consider The Weaver Law Firm an essential part of our business. It is our utmost true belief that he will provide the same high quality of service to you.

Richard Peinado, President
Peace of Mind Services, LLC
Houston, Texas

My company and I started working with the firm since the beginning of 2012. This is an honest firm, hard at work. We never had to hire a law firm prior to 2012, and we are not going anywhere else. Thank you, Richard. And thank you to all your staff for all the great help, service and attention to our needs.

Josué Munguía, President
Trinity Distribution, LLC
Humble, Texas

The Weaver Law Firm was highly professional, easy to work with and most importantly, time-sensitive to the clients' needs. During our lease negotiations, Richard Weaver was readily available and was very helpful in making progress to finalize the deal. I will recommend The Weaver Law Firm to my future clients and look forward to working with Richard again.

Richard E. Buxbaum, RADIUS Realty Advisors
Houston, Texas 77057

As a small business enterprise, it's important to have a good support network. The Weaver Law Firm is a valuable resource providing professionalism, expertise and reliability for my company. Whether it's contract review or filing with the state for corporate requirements, I know I can count on Richard and his team.

Enrique Cortez, President
Enitial Advanced Communications
San Antonio, Texas and Washington, D.C.

Richard Weaver and The Weaver Law Firm are very thorough and professional. They get the job done. I enjoy doing business with them. They explain everything in layman's terms and I would recommend this firm to anyone in the construction field. Thanks Richard!!

Terry Bynum, Owner
Able Paving
Houston, Texas 77205

My husband and I asked Richard Weaver to form a partnership agreement for a beach property when we were selling half our interest to another party. Richard did an outstanding job. He produced the necessary documents in a timely manner that thoroughly covered all aspects of our transfer of ownership. It was a pleasure to do business with such a professional and ethical firm.

Mary Ann Wosenitz
Houston, Texas

I have used The Weaver Law firm for quite some time. Richard's knowledge and experience have always helped me. He has also saved me plenty of headaches. He is always straightforward and honest. He clearly explains what my options are and always answers all my questions promptly. In the future, if I ever need someone to represent me, or advise me on my commercial lease contracts it's always going to be Richard Weaver. I always recommend his law firm to everyone I know.

Rafael Garcia, President
Sav-On Mattress Outlet LLC

Richard is a skilled, hardworking attorney who is passionate about his client's success.

Isaac W. Kyle, CEO
iCityCondo, Inc.

During the real estate boom, my wife and I invested in more than 10 houses in Houston mainly due to low entry prices and positive cash flow even though we lived in California. Naturally, we had to hire a property manager to take care of those houses for us. It was going fine for several months. But the property manager started sending money late and in the end, the property manager went in hiding after taking all of our rent income for several months. My wife and I decided to hire Richard Weaver as our lawyer after learning about his client reviews and background. At first, we did not know what to expect, but we didn't want to give up. We were not sure whether we would be able to recover anything. But Richard worked hard on our case and kept us informed during the process. Richard was wonderfully patient and understanding. Finally, to our pleasant surprise, he brought us a successful civil case when other lawyers had simply given up. His attention to detail surely helped win this case. On top of that, Richard is also very resourceful and worked within the budget we gave him. We can't say enough about the work Richard did on our behalf and highly recommend him for any real estate related legal matters.

and Hee
El Segundo, California

As a client of The Weaver Law Firm, I was extremely pleased with their services. In 2008, I sold my home in a short sell. The property transaction closed and title to the property passed to the new buyers. But the title agent/Esquire Title, LLC, failed to pay off the lien holder/lender, Wells Fargo. Evidently, Esquire initially tried to pay off the wrong lender. Before Esquire could or did pay Wells Fargo the new pay-off amount, the Texas Department of Insurance took over Esquire's operations, discontinued all residential real estate transactions being handled by Esquire, and froze Esquire's bank accounts. Thus, the funds intended to pay Wells Fargo were trapped in Esquire's bank account and never used to pay Wells Fargo. And Wells Fargo looked to me for payment. Wells Fargo sued me and the new owners of the property. After finding Mr. Weaver, he handled everything for me and kept me up to date on how the case was going. He was able to get a settlement showing that I owe nothing, which cleared me of all claims. Wells Fargo dropped their claims against me. It was reassuring to know that I had an attorney taking care of everything on my behalf. Mr. Weaver was very knowledgeable in real estate laws and looked out for my best interest. Thank you, Mr. Weaver.

Nikki Blaze
Houston, Texas

The Weaver firm efficiently handled some small business filings for me at a reasonable cost. I plan to continue to use the firm to meet my needs.

Joe Adams
Houston, Texas

Realtors are responsible for making real estate transactions run as smooth as possible, however, when there are problems, a real estate lawyer is necessary. For our family, Richard Weaver was just the lawyer for us.

I can safely say that Richard Weaver is a knowledgeable real estate lawyer from the point of drafting of the purchase agreement through and post closing.

Our issues involved environmental issues, seller disclosure and financing. Without Mr. Weaver's expertise, our situation could have been far more expensive to fix than if he had been involved post closing.

I now know that as buyers or sellers of real estate, people should consult an attorney before they sign the purchase agreement. This agreement spells out the terms of the transaction. By the time it is signed, it is often too late for the attorney to do anything about a problem with the real estate.

In our case we had already unknowingly signed a purchase agreement. Fortunately, Mr. Weaver was able to move swiftly and accurately towards resolution. He was able to lower the purchase price substantially and save us tens of thousands of dollars on the purchase of our dream home.

I liken hiring Richard Weaver to purchasing an insurance policy. When people wait until they know they need a lawyer, it is usually too late to find one. And if it isn't too late, it will usually cost much more to get a lawyer involved once the deal has gone awry. Many real estate transactions are time-sensitive and a responsive and attentive attorney can save the transaction or at least advise clients on the best options they have available.

In our specific case, we found Richard Weaver, who moved quickly and aggressively, charged fair attorney fees, and was able to make the fairest deal possible for our situation.

Believe me, in the future Mr. Weaver will review all of our real estate transactions beforehand. As a matter of fact, we found Richard Weaver to be so personable, intelligent and responsible. He is now our family attorney for all legal matters, which we may face in the future.

Jennifer Burke Tomball, Texas