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Davis Brown Employment and Labor Law Blog

HR Quick Takes: Non-Competes - October 2, 2019

Q: Are non-competes enforceable in Iowa?

A: Yes, but with a whole lot of caveats.

Enforceability depends a lot on how they are structured (too indefinite, poor definitions, the employee will starve because it prevents all future employment, etc.) and other factors like what did the employee receive for the non-compete?

A job making sandwiches is less compelling consideration in support of a non-compete than a company owner who receives a multi-million-dollar buyout. What the employee does-is it truly confidential or unique, can also affect enforceability.

HR Quick Takes features client questions and answers from Iowa employment attorneys. If you have a question you’d like answered, email

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