On May 8, 2019, Washington Governor Jay Inslee signed new legislation (referred to as the “Washington noncompete law”) that puts tighter restrictions on noncompetition agreements. Family-owned businesses should take particular note of this new law – which goes into effect on January 1, 2020 – and its more restrictive terms that may affect their business. Under the new law, noncompete agreements are unenforceable for workers making $100,000 or less in earnings per year.
The new law also forbids employers from restricting moonlighting activities for workers making less than twice the state’s minimum hourly wage ($13.50 per hour starting January 1, 2020 or approximately $56,000 per year). For a thorough summary of the new Washington noncompete law, please review this advisory prepared by our colleagues in the Employment Services Group. If you are concerned about whether your business’s noncompetition agreements are compliant and enforceable under the new law, this is a great time to have your legal counsel review them with you.