The Washington non-compete & non-solicitation agreement is a contract that prevents employees from working for or transacting business with competitors. The agreement limits the employee’s ability to solicit customers, employees, and independent contractors operating with the employer’s company. After the individual’s employment is concluded, the limitations of the agreement will be imposed within a designated geographical area and shall remain in effect for a specified duration. For example, an employer may impose a two-year limitation during which an employee is prohibited from working for similar companies within a ten-mile radius.
Laws – No statutes. Washington enforces non-compete & non-solicitation agreements on a case-by-case basis. When deciding on whether the employee restrictions are enforceable, the courts will look at the following (see 73 Wn.2d 307 (1968)):
- Whether the geographic area and time restrictions are reasonable.
- Whether the agreement provisions are necessary to prevent competition against the employer’s business.
- Whether the post-employment restrictions are void due to a violation of public policy.
- Whether the employee was offered adequate consideration at the time that the agreement was signed.
Non-Compete Limit – No statutory defined limit.
- Broadcasting Industry Employees – According to § 49.44.190, a non-compete agreement imposed on a broadcasting industry employee is void if the individual is terminated without sufficient cause or laid off by the employer.
Non-Solicitation Limit – No statutory defined limit.