White Paper

25 Pages
  • 25 Pages

Covenants Not to Compete


Anyone looking to enforce covenants not to compete or to protect trade secrets should remember five cardinal principles.

Few wounds strike as deep as those inflicted by people we trust, and that simple concept is at the heart of the law of covenants not to compete1 and trade secret protection. The good news for employers — especially in this computerized age of instant communications, heightened competition and highly mobile workers — is that most courts will enforce covenants not to compete and other restrictive covenants. They will also protect trade secrets and other confidential and proprietary information. But here’s the catch: Do it right, or watch the information and customers you want to protect drift away in a sea of unfair competition. This white paper reviews the five cardinal principles of enforcing covenants not to compete.



Kenneth P. Carlson, Jr.

Kenneth P. Carlson, Jr.

Constangy Brooks, Smith & Prophete LLP

  • Partner with Constangy, Brooks, Smith & Prophete, LLP in Winston-Salem, North Carolina
  • Practice primarily involves employment law and litigation, trade secret and unfair competition law and litigation, drafting employment and non-competition agreements, FLSA and wage/hour issues, serving as a mediator for cases in those areas of law
  • Consistently named to North Carolina Super Lawyers and Business North Carolina’s annual Legal Elite for employment law or alternative dispute resolution; named to North Carolina Lawyers Weekly 2023 “Power List” for employment lawyers
  • Consistently listed in Best Lawyers in America for employment law, trade secret law, or alternative dispute resolution, including various “Lawyer of the Year” designations
  • Certified mediator with an emphasis on mediating employment-related disputes, covenants not to compete and trade secret issues, FLSA and wage/hour issues, and ERISA denial of benefits cases
  • Adjunct professor at Wake Forest University School of Law, including courses on Trade Secrets & Unfair Competition, and Negotiation
  • J.D. degree, Wake Forest University School of Law; M.Div. degree, Yale University; B.A. degree, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Can be contacted at [email protected] or 336-721-684

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