Effective March 28, 2022, Mayor Bowser signed the Ban on Non-Compete Agreements Applicability Emergency Amendment Act of 2022 (D.C. Act 24-350), which amends the previously introduced Ban on Non-Compete Agreements Amendment Act of 2020 (D.C. Act 23-563) (“The Act”), to further postpone the date of implementation of the legislation until October 1, 2022. By continuing to delay the application of the legislation, the D.C. Council hopes to “ensure adequate deliberation over changes to the current law and to allow both District government entities and businesses to have adequate time to prepare for the law’s enactment.”
As a refresher, D.C. Act 23-563, ultimately aims to protect employees by effectively banning the use of non-compete agreements and/or company policies. However, the ban on non-compete agreements does not extend to confidentiality provisions. Ultimately, the legislation is incredibly clear regarding nothing preventing an employer from restricting “an employee from disclosing the employer’s confidential, proprietary, or sensitive information, client list, customer list, or a trade secrets.” Furthermore, once the Act does officially go into effect, employers will be required to provide employees with a notice of the non-compete ban within 90 calendar days of implementation, 7 calendar days after an employee’s date of hire, or 14 calendar days after an employee submits a written request for a copy of the notice.
Next Steps for Employers
Even with the postponement of the Act, employers are encouraged to remain abreast of any updates to the legislation that may occur between now and October 2022. Additionally, employers are recommended to speak with their legal counsel in order to review any current non-compete agreements/policies that are currently utilized by the organization.
We will continue to monitor the status of this law including any additional guidance that is released and provide updated information as needed.