In today's blog entry, we zero in on the above heading's reference to restrictive covenants from the comparatively narrow focus of so-called "noncompete agreements," which can occasionally comprise the central subject matter for a Connecticut court in a business litigation dispute.
We took an introductory look at noncompetes in a post from last year, noting in our entry from November 1, 2016, the view of one commentator that such contracts should be more limited than is the case these days. That writer argued that noncompetition agreements are tools that are too often exploited by employers to unfairly limit the future opportunities of departing workers.
We didn't delve to any material degree in that post on the specifics that a Connecticut court closely looks at in its analysis regarding enforceability of such contracts.
Many other information sources have done that, though, and we pass along the following summary information supplied by one leading business association in the state that spotlights Connecticut's so-called "five-prong test" concerning noncompetes.
As noted, state courts focus on a few enumerated points to assess whether a noncompete agreement is reasonable in scope and mutually fair to both an employer and worker.
Scrutiny most closely attaches to the stated time duration of a limitation, as well as on its geographical reach. As the above-cited media focus notes, courts will generally find that, "if those restrictions are found to be reasonable, the other factors will also be resolved in favor of the employer."
Those additional variables include examination of a worker's future opportunities if a limiting clause is upheld, along with a tandem look at any public interest that might be implicated by the specific language of a clause.
The above-linked article points out that, because the threshold query in any matter concerning a noncompete is whether it will pass judicial muster, a concerned employer or employee will likely want to timely consult with a proven business attorney. Experienced legal counsel will be closely familiar with relevant state law and be able to evaluate noncompete language from the perspective of Connecticut's stated statutory requirements.