A recent issue of The National Law Journal features discussion with Steve Riden in an article titled “Legal Industry Is Split on FTC’s Proposed Ban on Non-Competes.”

The article covers the Federal Trade Commission’s proposed Noncompete Clause Rule, which would essentially ban all employee noncompete agreements. The report was written by Christine Schiffner, Bureau Chief for the National Law Journal in Washington, D.C.

In the article, attorneys discuss a variety of viewpoints about the value of noncompete agreements, and assess the FTC’s proposal to restrict such provisions. Steve Riden is quoted as follows:

“We would suggest that the FTC reconsider an outright ban of non-compete agreements,” said Boston-based Beck Reed & Riden partner Stephen Riden. He and the firm’s other name partner Russell Beck spearheaded the publication of an open letter signed by 59 attorneys underscoring the effectiveness of non-compete agreements to protect trade secrets and “stealing confidential company information” when employees leave their jobs. His firm is also planning to actively weigh in during the FTC’s public comment period.


While 47 U.S. states currently permit non-competes and three states have enacted bans, Riden points out that “there are measures that can be taken to soften the impacts of non-competes,” including clear disclosures and more transparency during the hiring process. “Companies could provide notice of the non-compete agreements before the employee accepts the job,” Riden said—“so employees start a new role with their eyes wide open.”


While the FTC argues that the new rule would promote “greater dynamism, healthy competition, and innovation,” defense attorneys disagree. Particularly in circumstances of employees handling confidential or even trade secret information, non-compete clauses “give the old employer the opportunity to protect and further capitalize on the confidential information,” Riden said.

Steve has substantial experience representing companies and individuals in trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition matters.

eck Reed Riden LLP is among the leading authorities in trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition law, and our experience handling these matters is backed by our extensive employment law and business litigation experience. Our hand-picked team combines attorneys with complementary expertise and practical experience.

The Wall Street Journal featured Beck Reed Riden LLP’s noncompete agreement experience. In 2016, the White House issued a report entitled, “Non-Compete Agreements: Analysis of the Usage, Potential Issues, and State Responses,” relying in part on Beck Reed Riden LLP’s research and analysis, including its 50 State Noncompete Survey.

Beck Reed Riden LLP is Boston’s innovative litigation boutique. Our lawyers have years of experience working with clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to start-ups and individuals. We focus on business litigation and employment.

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