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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 50179
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor
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My daughter got dismissed from her job a month ago. She has

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My daughter got dismissed from her job a month ago. She has now found a new job in same her contract it states she can't work in the town or within 1000 meters of the town.when she signed this contract she was 16 with no parents present she is now 20 she was also an apprentice then which has since owners took over about six months ago and was treated very badly and was sacked with only one weeks pay.where do we stand many thanks gavin

Ben Jones : Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. What is the nature of her work and how would her working within this radius affect her ex employer?
Customer: Hairdresser they have 9 members of staff new hairdressers have just her and the owner and when they got rid of her they were not letting her cut hair and took her clients of her
Customer: So no I can't see how it would there business
Ben Jones :

Thanks you - will she be taking any of her previous clients with her, for example trying to poach them when she starts working for the new employer?

Customer: No
Ben Jones :

Post-termination restrictive covenants are a rather common occurrence in employment relationships. An employer would want to protect their business from a departing employee's knowledge, business connections, influence over remaining staff, etc. However, a covenant that restricts an employee's post-termination activities will be automatically unenforceable for being in restraint of trade, unless the employer can show that it was there to protect a legitimate business interest and did so in a reasonable way.


Legitimate business interests (LBIs) are commonly accepted to include:

  • Goodwill (including supplier and customer connections)

  • Trade secrets and confidential information

  • Stability of the workforce


An employer cannot apply a restrictive covenant just to stop someone competing with their business, but it can seek to stop that person using or damaging their LBIs by using a reasonably drafted covenant.


Non-competition covenants prevent an employee from working with a competing business or setting up to work in competition with their ex-employer. Such general restrictions are seen as a restraint of trade and will be difficult to enforce. They will only be seen as reasonable if in the process of working in competition, the employee uses trade secrets or sensitive confidential information belonging to their ex-employer, or their influence over clients is so great that such a restriction is necessary. The length of the restriction and its geographical coverage will also be relevant.


So if she is not going to be poaching any of her previous clients which the employer can claim belong to them and simply works for a different employer, minding her own business, even if that is within the restricted zone, it is unlikely the old employer can enforce this restriction in the circumstances.

Customer: Does her contract stand even though she was only sixteen when she sighned it
Ben Jones :

yes a contract of employment is legal even for a 16 year old

Ben Jones :

But that should not matter, it is unlikely these restrictions are enforceable in the circumstances

Customer: Ok thanks
Ben Jones :

you are welcome

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