If your work and residence was in one state, can a company threaten to take you to court regarding a non-compete under another state’s law?

UPDATED: Mar 16, 2012

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UPDATED: Mar 16, 2012Fact Checked

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If your work and residence was in one state, can a company threaten to take you to court regarding a non-compete under another state’s law?

I worked with an insurance company for 5 years. As a part of the job I had to have my residence and residence license in the stae that I worked in. When I was terminated I moved back to abother state where I had my other residence. I was sent a letter from an attorney representing the insurance company reminding me that I had to abide by the non-compete contractual obligations which were fully enforceable by my current state. However, I think he is mixed up because of my new address. Since I was only doing business in my former state’s territory during the time that I signed the non-compete, does he have any recourse trying to threaten me now?

Asked on March 16, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Texas


B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If you signed an agreement in another state-- then you can potentially be sued in either state to enforce the contract (either where you reside or where the contract was signed).  The real issue you need to resolve is whether or not your non-compete agreement extends to your new state.  This will depend on how your non-compete agreement was written.  Some non-competes have geographic restrictions-- meaning you may be able to pick up doing the same type of work as long as you're not in their "territory."  You also mentioned that you were terminated.  There may also be clauses which address voluntary versus involunary termination.  You really need to get a copy of what you signed, the letter than you received, and let an employment law attorney review the contract for any provisions that are favorable to your current situation.

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