Can my employer enforce a non-compete agreement if I leave them due to their changing of the location that I was hired to work at?

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Can my employer enforce a non-compete agreement if I leave them due to their changing of the location that I was hired to work at?

I am under a non-compete with IL casino employer, but they have relocated my position to one of their far away locations in another state. This was never discussed as a possibility when I was hired. I have now been offered the same type of job at another casino. Could my employer still successfully enforce the non-compete agreement, even though they are requiring me to work at a location that I was not originally hired to work at?

Asked on May 12, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Illinois

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

For a definitive opinion, you need to consult with an employment attorney who can evaluate the non-competition agreement and the specific facts in detail. As a general matter, you may have grounds to not be bound by the non-competition agreement:

1) Non-competition agreements are generally not binding when someone is terminated (the employer can't prevent you from working elsewhere, then fire you), unless specifically negotiated as part of a severance, etc. package.

2) Being transfered to another state is usually grounds to be considered to have been "constructively discharged"--i.e. the employer made it impossible to do the job you were hired for (which is at a certain location) and thus you were effectively fired.


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