By Elizabeth S. Loring, Lawyer Referral Service Panelist
Every non-compete agreement is different, so you really don’t know unless you seek the advice of an attorney. In Ohio, the fact that your employer terminated you does not automatically mean that the non-compete is invalid. This is why it’s very important to talk to somebody who understands the legality of non-compete agreements and can offer sound advice about what your rights and responsibilities are going forward. Ideally, you should consult an attorney before signing the non-compete. Often the terms are negotiable, but even if they are not, you should know what you are getting yourself into. Whether you are terminated or you quit, it is especially important to have a lawyer review your non-compete prior to applying for employment that could violate the agreement. A good employment lawyer will tell you what you can and cannot do under the agreement, and might be able negotiate your way out of the non-compete or minimize the restrictions.