While most of us have been distracted by such minor kerfuffles such as whether the president should be impeached, the real world continues to move forward. My friend, Julie Janofsky, relayed to me that Maryland has now, by statute, declared that non-competition covenants entered into by lower paid employees are not enforceable.
The statute, Md. Labor Law Art. § 3-716, makes such provisions unenforceable with respect to employees making $15 or less an hour or $31,200 a year or less. Customer lists and other proprietary information remain protected.
In 2016, the Obama Administration issued a “Call for Action,” urging states to render such provisions unenforceable. Needless to say, the Trump Administration did not join in encouraging such legislative action.
Here, as it is still often the case, Justice Brandeis, dissenting, got it right:
It is one of the happy incidents of the federal system that a single courageous State may, if its citizens choose, serve as a laboratory.New State Ice Co. v. Liebmann, 285 US 262, 311 (1932).