Fighting For
Employee And Union Rights
Fighting For
Employee And Union Rights

No more noncompetes?

On Behalf of | May 2, 2024 | Employment Law

Noncompete agreements have long been a thorny issue for employers and employees across Michigan. On one hand, many employers use them to protect their business interests when someone leaves the company. On the other hand, overuse and misuse of the agreements have led to intense scrutiny over the impact they have on workers.

However, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently made a pivotal decision affecting the use of these agreements.

FTC bans noncompete agreements

The federal government voted to ban the widespread use of noncompete clauses, which have historically restricted employees from moving freely to competing firms or starting their own businesses.

It is important to note that the ruling includes an exception for certain high-level executives who have existing noncompete agreements.

This ban could affect around 30 million American workers. It could also potentially boost wages by nearly $300 billion annually by allowing employees to change jobs without constraints.

That said, the decision has sparked significant controversy. Critics argue that the government is overreaching and that noncompete agreements are crucial for protecting businesses in an increasingly mobile world. As such, parties expect to appeal the decision before it takes effect later this year.

What does this mean for employers and employees?

Employers and employees alike should be aware of this significant change and prepare for its implications.

Employers seeking to protect proprietary information might consider alternatives to noncompete agreements, such as confidentiality and non-disclosure agreements (NDAs). These types of legal tools focus specifically on safeguarding sensitive information rather than restricting an employee’s future employment opportunities.

With the anticipated increase in job mobility, workers may find themselves in a better position to advance their careers and seek out roles that align more closely with their skills and values. This could be a time for employees to reassess their career paths and consider possibilities that were previously unavailable due to noncompete restrictions.

What do you think? Is banning the use of noncompete agreements in most situations a positive move?