Is my non-compete invalid because Virginia is a right-to-work state?

It is a common misconception that Virginia being a “right-to-work state” invalidates non-compete agreements. A Virginia court, however, will not strike down an otherwise enforceable, valid non-compete contract merely because Virginia has right-to-work laws.

Right-to-work laws allow employees to work for an employer without having to join or pay dues to a labor union. In other words, Virginia is an “open shop” state. Other states permit employers to require that new employees join the union as a condition of employment,

Although Virginia is a right-to-work state, your non-compete may still be enforceable if it is reasonable in duration, function, and geographic scope.

An experienced non-compete lawyer can review the terms of your non-compete and help you understand whether a court would likely deem it enforceable before you start a new job or open your own business.