Non-competition agreements in Massachusetts have been the center of debate for several years. As bills to ban non-competes before the House of Representatives and Senate continue to swirl, many employees in Massachusetts are forced to agree to restrictive covenants on a take-it-or-leave-it basis as a condition of employment. While Massachusetts is certainly not the only state where non-competes are enforceable, it’s status as a technology hub draws a sharp contrast to its leading rival: California. Unlike Boston or Cambridge, employees in Silicon Valley need not be concerned about such contracts since the California legislature has largely banned such restrictions except in very limited circumstances.
From this perspective, it’s no wonder that Silicon Valley leads the world and eclipses Boston as home to the largest and most prominent global technology companies. The absence of non-competes creates a more friendly business environment for employees and companies alike, with Facebook being a prime example. Founded in a Harvard dormitory, Facebook eventually made it’s home in California. Smart choice. The ability to hire top talent unencumbered by non-competes agreements meant more resources could be dedicated to building the company and less towards defending the inevitable litigation that flows from restrictive covenants.