Non-compete agreement One trend accelerated by the pandemic is employment contracts that don’t include non-compete provisions but broad confidentiality and non-solicitation agreements instead.

Pressed by labor shortages, a growing number of employers are using non-compete provisions to hold onto employees—trying to enforce them through litigation, or inserting clauses into employment contracts, even in jurisdictions where they’re banned. 

That’s according to employment attorneys who practice in California—one of several states that bans non-compete clauses, which are meant to stop employees from engaging in competitive conduct after they leave a company. This includes using skills they learned on the job, working for a competitor or starting their own company in the same industry. Proponents of the ban, including California’s attorney general, argue non-competes keep wages from growing since they stop workers from seeking higher-paying job opportunities in their field. 

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