U.S. - Ohio
General Rule "Reasonable noncompetes have been enforceable under Ohio law since the 1940s. The relevant factors specified by the Supreme Court of Ohio include: whether the restrictions are necessary to protect the employer’s legitimate interests; whether the restrictions would impose an undue hardship on the employee; and whether the restrictions would injure the public." - Quoted from Ohio Bar FAQs, which contains some useful introductory information (e.g., continued employment is generally fair consideration for signing a non-competition agreement after employment has commenced). See generally Raimonde v. Van Vlerah, 42 Ohio St. 2d 21, 325 N.E.2d 544 (1975).
For cites to applicable case law, including physician-specific decisions and independent contractors, see 2013 Dec. article -- as well as 2010 article which also cites authority for the judicial modification of non-competes to the extent necessary to protect the employer's legitimate business interests.2012.Oct.11 Non-Compete Accordia Decision Reversed for Mergers. Ohio's Supreme Court reversed the decision reported below in red font, holding that "The merged company has the ability to enforce noncompete agreements as if the resulting company had stepped into the shoes of the absorbed company. It follows that omission of any “successors or assigns” language in the employees’ noncompete agreements in this case does not prevent the L.L.C. from enforcing the noncompete agreements." For a copy of the decision, email Mark.
2012.May.24 Non-compete Limited on Post-Merger Basis (Ohio Ruling). The closing date of a merger triggered a termination of employment with the target company, for purposes of measuring a non-competition agreement's two year post-employment. The merged company was accordingly not entitled to enforce the non-competition agreement beyond that two-year period, because the agreement omitted a "successors and assigns" provision and referred to service with "the Company" alone. That was the Ohio court's conclusion in Accordia of Ohio v. Frankel.
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