DQ1: Although non-competition clause is a powerful tool to protect the employer from the potential competition of the former employees, its use can be highly unfair for the workforce. In some cases following the non-competition clause may prevent people from finding any other job at all. Thus, if a person is specializing in aircraft engineering, he/she is likely to find employment only in the few competing companies, which are engaged in aircraft construction. A non-competition clause in the contract would mean that no other company in the industry will be available for future employment. Hence, employment termination with one company will imply the end of the career in aircraft engineering and, perhaps, a certain period of unemployment. Therefore, I believe it is not completely reasonable to support non-competition clauses, since they protect employers but significantly harm individual employees. A certain balance, however, can be found, for example, limiting employment in the competing companies for a short period of time and in a .particular geographical region, or restricting information disclosure regarding some specific business aspects, such as client base and technological know-how.
DQ2: Filing a law suit is always an expensive and a time-consuming procedure. There is no real need to file a suit, if it is possible to resolve the situation without involving the court. However, the non-breaching party should always consider that in most cases it is possible to file a suit only within a certain period of time, a statute of limitations. Therefore, unless the settlement is clearly decided upon, the law suit serves as an assurance, that the breaching party would have to satisfy the claim. Thus, if a car is purchased from a dealer with a guaranteed performance level up to 100 000 km and non-compliance is noticed before the distance limit is reached, the lawsuit should be filed immediately. If the car is still in use after the dealer promised to replace/repair it, after 100 000 km there will be no way to prove the damage and there will be no legal way to make sure that the dealer pays.
1. Your point is completely valid, since in aircraft industry sensitive information is extremely precious for the competitiveness of the firm. Moreover, as non-competition clause in this case does not prohibit employment, but only limits information disclosure, it does not harm employees significantly.
2. Although non-competition clause undermines some “American” values, as you have rightly pointed out, it also plays a great role in assuring fair competition and market fairness. Therefore, I agree that non-competition clauses are necessary to protect companies, especially small ones, like the one of your uncle, against unfair competition practices.
1.1. I completely agree with your opinion, since in some cases not filing a lawsuit will be beneficial for both the breaching and non-breaching parties. Therefore, the settlement will be possible to achieve much faster and on better terms.