Top 10 Noncompete Developments of 2023

2023 proved to be a very busy year for those monitoring developments in the area of noncompetition law. We highlight 10 major state and federal developments from 2023 in the area of employee noncompetition law, including increased state and federal efforts to outright ban their use.

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UK Employment Law Update: Family Acts, UK Government Legislative Proposals and Recent Case Developments

In May, the UK government passed three family-related Acts that employers should be aware of: the Neonatal Care Act; the Protection from Redundancy Act; and the Carer’s Leave Act. UK courts have also made notable rulings on noncompete restrictions, and COVID-19-related health and safety detriment claims.

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What Employers Can Learn From the NLRB’s Recent Prosecution and Settlement of a Noncompete Case

A recent employer settlement with a National Labor Relations Board Region shows that the General Counsel is not just focused on noncompetition restrictions, but also nonsolicitation restrictions that the General Counsel believes are overbroad.

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New York Legislature Agrees to Ban Noncompete Agreements

New York state is poised to join four other states in banning employment-related noncompete agreements. In addition to standalone noncompetition agreements, noncompete restrictions on employees within offer letters, employment agreements, stock option agreements and other employment-related agreements, are subject to the new law’s prohibition.

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NLRB GC’s Latest Guidance Expands Restrictions to Noncompete Provisions

The General Counsel of the National Labor Relations Board (the Board) issued new guidance announcing her position that certain noncompete agreements violate the National Labor Relations Act. Citing McLaren Macomb, the General Counsel urged the Board to adopt her position regarding noncompete agreements, arguing that the Board already embraced a similarly restrictive standard for analyzing the lawfulness of severance agreements.

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Minnesota’s 2023 Legislative Session Brings Major Changes to Minnesota Employment Law

Gov. Tim Walz has signed or is expected to sign the Minnesota legislature’s Jobs and Economic Development and Labor Omnibus Budget Bill, bringing broad change to the Minnesota employment law landscape. Notably, the new law bans post-employment noncompete agreements in Minnesota, creates state-wide paid sick and safe time leave, prohibits restrictive franchise agreements, modifies wage disclosure protection law, provides additional protections for pregnant and nursing workers, prevents mandatory employer-sponsored meetings, and creates additional paystub requirements for construction workers, among other things. Gov. Walz signed the paid family and medical leave law, creating a new paid family and medical leave program funded by employer and employee payroll taxes and providing up to 12 weeks of paid leave in a single benefit year for an employee’s own serious health condition and up to 12 weeks of paid leave in a single benefit year for bonding, safety leave or family care, with a cap of no more than 20 weeks of total combined leave in any single benefit year. The Minnesota legislature also ended its 2023 session after passing a recreational cannabis law, amending the state’s drug and alcohol testing laws following the legalization of recreational marijuana, which is anticipated to be signed into law by Gov. Walz this week.

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