In Connecticut, non-compete agreements are used frequently in many different industries. They are designed to potentially benefit both the employer and the employee in different ways. Though the use may differ from situation to situation as well, it is supposed to be a tool that ensures a work situation is fair for all parties involved, rather than used as a tool of leverage.

A non-compete agreement is an agreement employees sign that binds them to a legal promise of not providing work for the competition, or competing directly with their current company on their own. FindLaw takes a look at what makes a non-compete agreement valid, as there are several legal requirements that it must fulfill in order to be considered valid.

First of all, the agreement must be supported by consideration when signed. This means that the employee must be getting compensation in exchange for stating they will not aid competition. If signed before being hired, employment itself is considered the compensation. However, signing a non-compete agreement after being hired means you should be getting something else in return, as the promise of continued employment is not valid.

Next, the agreement itself must be reasonable in terms of how long it lasts, its scope, and its geography. In other words, you cannot be asked to sign an agreement that permanently bans you from working in your general industry on a whole.

These are all things to keep in mind before you sign a non-compete agreement. Ensuring that it is equal and beneficial to all parties is an important part.