Our Non-Compete Attorney Will Examine if Your Franchise Agreement is Enforceable
When you signed your franchise agreement, you almost certainly agreed to a non-compete clause that restricts your ability to operate an independent business after your franchise ends. Non-compete clauses are ubiquitous in franchising; and, although they can serve legitimate business interests for franchisors in some circumstances, franchisors routinely use them to overreach. Without the help of a non-compete attorney, you may not know if your rights are being violated.
If your franchise agreement has expired (or if your franchise has been terminated) and you are facing a non-compete clause, you should speak with a non-compete lawyer who has experience in challenging the enforceability of these costly contract provisions. With more than three decades of experience exclusively representing franchisees and dealers, non-compete attorney Jeffrey M. Goldstein has helped many franchisees avoid the enforcement of post-termination non-competition covenants. Laws in all 50 states protect franchisees against unreasonable non-compete clauses; and, with a nationwide practice, Mr. Goldstein can help you regardless of where you are trying to start an independent business.
What is a Covenant Not to Compete?
A non-compete clause, also known as a non-competition covenant or a covenant not to compete, is a contract provision that prohibits one party from competing with the other. Within the franchise context, franchisors use non-compete clauses to prevent their franchisees from using what they learn as members of the franchise system to open competing independent (or franchised) businesses post-termination.
Covenants not to compete can be legally enforced. If a covenant not to compete serves a valid business purpose and is reasonable in scope, then it will survive scrutiny under the laws of most states. As a franchisee, you gain access to a significant amount of proprietary information; and, at least theoretically, you should learn a lot about running a successful business. While you pay for the privilege, you are not “buying” this information outright. When your franchise agreement ends, your franchisor has a legitimate interest in ensuring that you do not use what you have learned to compete with its company-owned outlets and other franchisees.
When is a Covenant Not to Compete Unenforceable?
There are several issues that can render a covenant not to compete unenforceable. Different states have different standards, and non-compete attorney Jeffrey Goldstein will need to examine the facts of your particular case to determine if you have grounds to challenge your franchise agreement’s non-compete clause. Generally speaking, however, common grounds for challenging non-compete clauses include:
- The non-compete covenant prohibits business that is not competitive with the franchise system
- The non-compete covenant is unreasonably long in duration
- The non-compete covenant is unnecessarily broad in geographic scope
- The non-compete covenant prevents you from utilizing your specialized education or training and makes it difficult (if not impossible) for you to earn a living
Schedule a Free Initial Consultation with Non-Compete Attorney Jeffrey M. Goldstein
Are you wondering if you have grounds to challenge the non-compete clause in your franchise agreement? If so, we invite you to schedule a free initial consultation at the Goldstein Law Firm. To request an appointment with national franchise lawyer and non-compete attorney Jeffrey M. Goldstein, call us at 202-293-3947 or tell us how we can help online today.