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Hello. I am Ed, a Solicitor qualified in England and Wales with over a decade’s experience in the legal profession advising clients.
I specialise in Commercial Contracts, Business Transactions, Employment, Dispute Resolution, Personal Injury and Road Traffic Law and shall be reviewing your legal problem today.
I shall be delighted to talk with you by phone to discuss your issue in greater detail if you accept the site’s automatic offer of a Premium Service Phone Call.
I am sorry that you are facing a potential dispute with your ex-employer for breach of post-termination restrictions but hopefully I can assist you in resolving the matter before it escalates and you are forced to incur significant further legal costs.
Restrictive Covenants on an Employee in Employment Contracts are very difficult to enforce by the Employer on the grounds that they are Restraint of Trade and/or Penalty Clauses which are void on the grounds of public policy. This is because they unfairly restrict a worker in their freedom to contract and freedom to work.
Although Restrictive Covenants are commonplace in employment contracts, and sometimes Employees receive threatening letters from their former Employer demanding a signed undertaking before issuing court proceedings for an injunction (especially in Sales and Recruitment where networking and contacts are the Employer’s stock in trade), this action has “bluff” and “scare” value only.
The only time a Court will entertain enforcing a Restrictive Covenant against an Employee is for a very senior and high paying job such as a Chief Executive of a global company and where there is a legitimate interest of the Employer that they must protect by preventing the employee from working for a competitor for a period of time after the Contract of Employment has ended. Even then, the Employee must have received their own independent legal advice and must have fully appreciated the implications of the Restrictive Covenant.
If your ex-employer is claiming against you for working for a competitor, this is probably a spurious attempt at restraint of trade and any court action will fail.
I hope this is a satisfactory initial reply to your question and you understand my recommendations. Please revert to me if you do not understand anything and require clarification of my answer and I shall be delighted to assist.
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