Is my non-compete agreement still valid even if it was under the company’s old name?

UPDATED: Jul 13, 2010

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Is my non-compete agreement still valid even if it was under the company’s old name?

I have a non-compete agreement with my company, against the company’s older name. Since then, the company changed it’s name since they became part of a different company. I do not know if it was merger, or a purchase. My non-compete does say “company XXX and and its affiliates and subsidiaries”. Would it be enforceable?

Asked on July 13, 2010 under Employment Labor Law, New Jersey


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

Yes, it will almost certainly be enforceable. A company's name has no bearing whatsoever on the enforceability of its contracts--companies change names all the time. Also, the ownership of the company generally has no bearing--stock is sold, companies merge, etc. without necessarily affecting the validity of contracts. ONLY if the company was sold in an asset purchase (not stock) deal AND in doing so, the buyer did not take over contracts--which is a VERY rare case--might the noncompete not be enforceable on that ground.

On the other hand, noncompetes must be reasonable, given the industry and you job/level, in terms of geographic scope and length. If you feel the noncompete is too long or too broad, bring it to an attorney who can review it for you.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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