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NY Senate Approves Ban on Non-Compete Agreements in Employment Contracts

The New York State Senate has voted to ban all non-compete agreements for employees in the state. The law, Bill No. S03100 would, if also approved by the New York State Assembly and signed into law, make it illegal for employers to write provisions in their contracts that would prevent employees from working with competitors in the same field or keep them from starting their own businesses. The goal of this law is to encourage competition and prevent employers from coercing their employees into working for them against their will.


What Are Non-Compete Agreements?

Non-compete agreements are a type of agreement that is sometimes included in employment contracts that limit the ability of employees to seek work when they are fired or quit. In effect, the agreement prevents them from working for another company in the same industry within the same geographical region (or regions) as their current employer for a certain length of time (usually between six months and two years). It also prevents them from starting a competing business in the same region as their employer during that time.

Why Do Employers Use Non-Compete Agreements?

Employers will typically use non-compete agreements to compel employees to continue working for them long after they might otherwise want to leave. This is because an employee with a non-compete agreement could be penalized for seeking employment with a competitor for better wages or benefits. It also prevents employees from using the personal connections and skills they develop in the course of doing business to start their own competing company.

Why Are Non-Compete Agreements Controversial?

While these agreements have been incredibly beneficial for employers, they have often been disastrous for employees, who find many of their potential opportunities for professional advancement cut off. Employees who want to find work may often need to move long distances to escape their non-compete agreements, or may find themselves unable to find work at all, depending on their specialization. This allows employers to underpay employees, knowing that their contracts prevent them from finding better opportunities elsewhere.

What Should You Do if You Have a Non-Compete Agreement?

If you are an employee with a non-compete agreement, you should speak to a lawyer with experience handling employment law matters. They can help you to understand the potential options you may have available to you, and fight on your behalf to enforce your rights. The sooner you call, the sooner they can get to work for you.

Steven Mitchell Sack, the Employee’s Lawyer, is a New York employment lawyer with more than 42 years’ experience handling the many aspects of employment law. His new book, “Fired!: Protect Your Rights & FIGHT BACK If You’re Terminated, Laid Off, Downsized, Restructured, Forced to Resign or Quit,” is available in hardback, and contains valuable advice on dealing with employment and labor law issues. To purchase the book, feel free to contact Steven Sack at 917-371-8000 or visit the website at To inquire about a legal matter, please feel free to contact attorney Steven Sack at 917-371-8000 or

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