Can company force you to sign a non-compete after they fire you?

My ex-employer is threatening to withhold my final wages if I don’t sign a non-compete after I was fired.

Asked on February 20, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, New York

Answers:

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

First if all, wages may not be withheld or deducted other than for legally mandated reasons (i.e. child support, garnishments, certain taxes, etc.). In other words, as a general rule earned wages must be paid. Further, as for the non-compete agreement, you don't have to sign it. If your former employer wants you to sign it, they have to make it worth your while such as offering you severance. If your pay is withheld, then you can sue in small claims court or file a wage complaint with your state's depatment of labor. You could also consult directly with a local employment law attorney.

M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

First if all, wages may not be withheld or deducted other than for legally mandated reasons (i.e. child support, garnishments, certain taxes, etc.). In other words, as a general rule earned wages must be paid. Further, as for the non-compete agreement, you don't have to sign it. If your former employer wants you to sign it, they have to make it worth your while such as offering you severance. If your pay is withheld, then you can sue in small claims court or file a wage complaint with your state's depatment of labor. You could also consult directly with a local employment law attorney.


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