The people that you hire are a liability for your business. They could harass a co-worker or alienate a client, either of which could cost you money. They could cause an accident that hurts someone or damages your equipment.
They might also leave your company to start a competing business or work for one of your competitors. That last risk is at least one that you can protect your business against with proper planning. Especially if you hire people to serve in positions where they have access to trade secrets, your company may require that they sign a non-compete agreement.
Can you count on the Mississippi courts to enforce the non-compete agreement if a former worker violates its terms by starting a business in the same industry or working for a competitor?
Enforcement is possible under certain circumstances
Non-compete agreements protect employers at the expense of slightly limiting the options of the people who work for them. Some employees will knowingly violate a non-compete because they assume your company won’t try to enforce it or that the courts won’t side with your business if you do.
The Mississippi civil courts do uphold non-compete agreements, provided that they are necessary for the employer’s protection and that the terms of the agreement don’t place an unfair economic burden on the employee. An agreement limited to a specific geographic area or a specific amount of time will be more enforceable than an agreement without set limitations.
When you understand how the Mississippi courts handle business litigation, you will feel more empowered to stand up for your company following employee misconduct.