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3 ways to get out of your noncompete agreement

When you leave a job, you may experience frustration because of a noncompete agreement. Your previous employer may claim you will not be able to get the same position in another company or open up a similar practice. When your former employer sends you a cease-and-desist document in the mail, you may not know what you can do.

Do not just assume the noncompete agreement will hold up in court. Here are some of the ways a worker might be able to strike a noncompete agreement down and enjoy the freedom to work as they please.

1. It is harmful to public health or safety

If you work in the health care industry, your work is crucial to the well-being of the public. Whether you are a doctor, nurse, researcher or another figure in the health or scientific fields, it might be in the public's best interest that you continue your work without restrictions. If there is a shortage of specialty workers in your area, you may be able to get out of your noncompete clause by claiming your work will save lives. Another route that may be available is claiming that the restriction the agreement puts in place is too broad.

2. There is no confidential information to protect

Some employers enact noncompete contracts because they have valuable secrets that they do not want to share. This is not always the case, however. Many businesses get their information from public sources such as the internet, professional directories or phone books. If this is the case with your former employer and the agreement doesn't seem to serve any other legitimate business purpose, the noncompete agreement might not be enforceable.

3. Your employer breaks the contract

Your noncompete agreement may be part of a larger document spelling out pay, insurance and other details of your employment. You should look at your contract to see if your past employer failed to fulfill its end of the bargain. If your former employer did not adhere to the contract, you may not need to either.

These are just some ways you might be able to prove your noncompete agreement is invalid.

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