Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Can I Break My Noncompete?

Dear Rich: I'm quitting my job as an SQL developer to strike out on my own doing mobile apps for the Android. The software I did for my employer doesn't have anything to do with the apps I'm working on. A lot of my apps are variations on old arcade games. Do I need to be concerned if I signed a noncompete agreement with my employer? We couldn't say without reading your agreement and knowing which state's law applies. (These states restrict or prohibit noncompetes -- Alabama, California, Colorado, Florida, Louisiana, Montana, Nevada, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota and Texas). Under a standard noncompete you agree not to compete with your former employer for a period of time. If your mobile app business is competitive -- more information needed -- you may be in violation of the noncompete. Here's how some  people fight it. 
Why Skee Ball? The Dear Rich Staff hasn't bought this app yet, but we look at it longingly. What's holding us back is the disconnect between the memory of skee ball on the Long Beach boardwalk and the idea that we're experiencing something similar flicking our finger. We'll figure it out.