How are NDA agreements/non-compete agreements enforced?
Question Details: I have an employee who is being harassed by a former employer over a non-compete agreement that he signed 9 years ago. This agreement was never full execute and since then the company sold to a new owner. They will not produce the executed copy of the non-compete or any business sale information that shows the legal transfer of this document to the new owner. This employee does not have the resources to constantly defend. The former employer's attorney has stated that the original owner will testify that the agreement was signed and that it would stand up in court regardless of the fact that they cannot produce the document. Is this true? or is it true that if there is no executed document that there is no agreement?
A contract can be enforced without an executed written contract IF the court can be convinced that both sides agreed to and consented to it. If the former owner testifies that the agreement was executed that may be enough if he is persuasive and credible and the other facts support his testimony. For example, if there is evidence that the employee was presented witht the noncompete, because generally, employees who would be subject to a noncompete are not retained (I.e. they are fired) if they won't sign and agree to the contract, that would support that he did agree to it. So the answer is "it depends" on whether the credible testimony (which the employee can, of course oppose with his own testimony) plus evidence is sufficient to establish the existence and terms of the agreement.