Non-Compete Agreements in Colorado
Concerns about non-compete agreements often arise when an employee is offered an employment contract or a separation agreement. In Colorado, C.R.S. § 8-2-113 governs non-compete agreements. The statute precludes non-compete or non-solicitation agreements except for certain exceptions. Otherwise stated, most non-compete agreements are void and unenforceable in Colorado, unless the non-compete agreement concerns trade secrets; reimbursement of training costs; the sale of a business; or agreements with executive or management personnel. The exception for the protection of trade secrets is broad enough that it can cover a lot of circumstances. In addition, solicitation of customers might constitute a trade secret violation under the Colorado Uniform Trade Secrets Act. Even if the agreement fits into one of the statutory exceptions, to be enforceable, there must be sufficient consideration and the non-compete clause must be reasonable in duration and geographic scope.
Separation agreements vary, but they invariably require the employee to release all claims and rights the employee may have against the employer. If you’re given a separation agreement look to see if it includes any non-compete or trade secret provisions. These provisions can attempt to restrict or limit an employee’s ability to obtain subsequent employment. In addition to non-compete provisions, some separation agreements include provisions about trade secret violations.
If you have questions about the legal validity of a Colorado non-compete agreement, contact Denver Employment Lawyer Gregory A. Hall at 303-320-0584 to schedule an appointment. Attorney Hall has handled employment cases since 1995.