Washington, D.C.’s Non-Compete Ban Delayed Again

The Washington, D.C. Ban on Non-Compete Agreements Act of 2020 (D.C. Act) is on hold once again, this time due to emergency legislation signed by Mayor Muriel Bowser earlier this week.  The new legislation pushes the D.C. Act’s effective date from April 1 to October 1, 2022.  As reported here, the D.C. Act is one of the most comprehensive bans on employee non-competition restrictions to date.  It not only prohibits post-separation non-competes for employees working within the District (consistent with what a handful of states, including California, already do), but also rejects common “anti-moonlighting” provisions that prevent employees from working for another employer, including a competitor, during their employment.

Since the D.C. Act’s passage, there has been regular talk of amendments, including one that would allow an employer to prohibit an employee from maintaining simultaneous employment with another employer if the second position would present a conflict of interest or raise ethics concerns.  No agreement has been reached on such an amendment yet, and Councilmember Elissa Silverman’s memorandum laying out her rationale for introducing the emergency legislation stated that the extension was intended to allow the D.C. Council to consider such an amendment further.  We expect further activity with the D.C. Act and will provide further updates as it occurs.