How to Create an Effective Non-Compete and Non-Disclosure Agreement

How to Create an Effective Non-Compete and Non-Disclosure Agreement


Creating an effective non-compete and non-disclosure agreement template is essential for protecting your business's sensitive information and maintaining a competitive edge. These agreements are key to ensuring legal protection and business security. Here’s what you need to know right away:

  • Non-Compete Agreement: Prevents employees or partners from working with direct competitors for a specified period and within a certain geographic area.
  • Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA): Ensures that confidential information, such as trade secrets or customer lists, isn’t disclosed to unauthorized parties.

Combining these agreements into a single document can simplify the process and provide comprehensive legal protection.

Non-compete and non-disclosure agreements are crucial tools for businesses. They keep proprietary knowledge safe and help maintain competitive advantages. By using a well-drafted template, you can shield sensitive information, uphold business integrity, and minimize legal risks.

Understanding Non-Compete and Non-Disclosure Agreements

To effectively protect your business, understand what non-compete and non-disclosure agreements are, their purposes, legal contexts, and common uses.


Non-Compete Agreement (NCA): This type of agreement prevents an employee from working with competitors or starting a competing business for a specified period after leaving the company. The goal is to protect the employer's competitive edge and sensitive information.

Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA): This agreement ensures that confidential information, such as trade secrets or customer lists, isn’t disclosed to unauthorized parties. It legally binds the receiving party to keep the shared information private.


The primary purpose of both agreements is to safeguard a company's proprietary information. Here's a quick breakdown:

  • NCA: Protects against the loss of competitive advantage by restricting former employees from joining or creating rival businesses.
  • NDA: Prevents the disclosure of confidential information, ensuring it doesn't fall into the hands of competitors or unauthorized individuals.

Legal Context

The enforceability of these agreements varies by state. For instance, California generally doesn’t honor non-compete clauses, while other states like North Dakota and Oklahoma also have restrictions. It's crucial to check your state's laws before drafting these agreements.

Common Uses

Non-Compete Agreements are often used in industries where employees have access to sensitive information that could be valuable to competitors. This includes sectors like:

  • Media: To prevent popular personalities from moving to rival stations.
  • Financial Services: To protect client lists and proprietary financial strategies.
  • Technology: To safeguard innovative processes and product designs.

Non-Disclosure Agreements are commonly used in scenarios such as:

  • Business Negotiations: When two companies discuss potential partnerships or joint ventures, NDAs ensure that any shared information remains confidential.
  • Employment: New employees, especially those in sensitive positions, are often required to sign NDAs to protect the company's proprietary data.
  • Investor Discussions: Companies seeking funding may use NDAs to protect their business plans and trade secrets during preliminary discussions.

Combining these agreements into a single document can streamline the process and provide comprehensive legal protection. This approach ensures that all aspects of confidentiality and non-competition are covered, making it easier for both parties to understand their obligations.

In the next section, we'll dive into the key elements of a non-compete agreement, helping you understand what to include for maximum protection.

Key Elements of a Non-Compete Agreement

When crafting a non-compete agreement, it's crucial to include specific elements to ensure it's reasonable and enforceable. Let's break down these key components:

Scope of Work

The scope of work defines what activities the employee is restricted from engaging in. For instance, if you worked at a telecom provider, the agreement might prohibit you from joining a competing telecom company. However, it should be specific enough to only cover activities that could harm the employer's business.

Example: "You agree not to engage in any business activities related to telecom network management or software development for competing telecom providers."


The duration specifies how long the non-compete restrictions will last. Most agreements cover a period ranging from six months to one year after employment ends. Longer durations can be seen as overly restrictive and may not hold up in court.

Example: "This non-compete agreement is effective for one year following the termination of your employment."

Geographical Area

The geographical area defines where the employee is restricted from working. This should be limited to areas where the employer actually does business. Overly broad areas can render the agreement unenforceable.

Example: "You agree not to work for any competing telecom provider within a 50-mile radius of any location where the Company operates."

Legitimate Interest

The legitimate interest explains why the non-compete is necessary. This could be to protect trade secrets, proprietary information, or customer relationships. Courts are more likely to enforce agreements that clearly state a legitimate business interest.

Example: "This agreement is necessary to protect the Company's proprietary software development techniques and client relationships."


Consideration refers to what the employee receives in exchange for agreeing to the non-compete. This could be the job itself, a promotion, or additional compensation. Without consideration, the agreement may not be binding.

Example: "In consideration of your employment with the Company, you agree to the terms outlined in this non-compete agreement."

In the next section, we'll explore the key elements of a non-disclosure agreement, ensuring you know what to include to keep your business information secure.

Key Elements of a Non-Disclosure Agreement

When creating a non compete and non disclosure agreement template, it’s crucial to understand the key elements of a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA). These elements ensure that your sensitive information remains protected. Let's break them down:

Confidential Information

Definition: Clearly define what constitutes "confidential information." This could be anything from business strategies, financial data, technical processes, and client lists to proprietary software.

Example: "Confidential information includes, but is not limited to, business plans, marketing strategies, customer data, and proprietary software codes."

Being specific helps avoid confusion and ensures both parties know what needs protection.


Exclusions: Not all information can be kept confidential. Specify what is not considered confidential. Common exclusions include:

  • Information already public
  • Information the receiving party knew before the NDA
  • Information independently developed without using the confidential information
  • Information the disclosing party permits to be shared in writing

Example: "Confidential information does not include information that is public knowledge or was known to the receiving party prior to disclosure."

Proprietary Information

Ownership: Clearly state that all proprietary information remains the property of the disclosing party. This includes trade secrets, designs, formulas, and any other intellectual property.

Example: "All proprietary information disclosed under this agreement remains the exclusive property of the disclosing party."

Return of Materials

Obligation: The receiving party must return or destroy all confidential materials upon termination of the agreement or at the disclosing party’s request.

Example: "Upon termination of this agreement, the receiving party shall return or destroy all copies of confidential information."

This ensures that sensitive information isn’t left unsecured after the agreement ends.

Best Practices

Security Measures: Outline the steps the receiving party must take to protect the confidential information. These could include secure storage, encryption, and limiting access to authorized personnel only.

Example: "The receiving party agrees to use reasonable security measures to protect the confidentiality of the disclosed information."

Non-Disclosure Obligations: Specify how the receiving party should handle the information. This includes not disclosing it to third parties and using it only for the agreed purposes.

Example: "The receiving party shall not disclose any confidential information to third parties without the prior written consent of the disclosing party."

Summary Table

Element Description
Confidential Information Clearly define what information is protected.
Limitations Specify what is not considered confidential information.
Proprietary Information State that all proprietary information remains the property of the disclosing party.
Return of Materials Obligate the return or destruction of materials upon agreement termination.
Best Practices Outline security measures and non-disclosure obligations.

By including these elements in your non compete and non disclosure agreement template, you ensure that your business's sensitive information is well-protected, fostering trust and security in your professional relationships.

Next, we will discuss how to combine Non-Compete and Non-Disclosure Agreements to streamline your legal documents and enhance protection.

How to Combine Non-Compete and Non-Disclosure Agreements

Combining Non-Compete and Non-Disclosure Agreements into a single document can streamline your legal processes and provide comprehensive protection for your business. Here's how to do it effectively:


Integrating both agreements into one document simplifies management and ensures consistency. Instead of juggling multiple agreements, you have a single, cohesive document covering all essential aspects. This approach is particularly useful for new hires or business partners, as it reduces paperwork and potential confusion.


Combining these agreements offers several benefits:

  • Efficiency: One document means less administrative work and easier tracking.
  • Clarity: Employees or partners have a clear understanding of their obligations.
  • Comprehensive Protection: Both non-compete and non-disclosure clauses are covered, leaving no gaps in legal protection.

Template Structure

A well-structured combined agreement should include the following sections:

  1. Introduction: Define the purpose and scope of the agreement.
  2. Definitions: Clearly define terms like "Confidential Information," "Competition," and "Proprietary Information."
  3. Non-Disclosure Obligations: Detail what information must remain confidential and the duration of these obligations.
  4. Non-Compete Clauses: Specify the geographical area, duration, and scope of restricted activities.
  5. Non-Solicitation Clauses: Prevent the solicitation of your employees or clients.
  6. Consideration: Outline what the other party receives in exchange for agreeing to these terms.
  7. Return of Materials: Ensure all proprietary materials are returned upon termination.
  8. Governing Law: State which jurisdiction's laws will govern the agreement.
  9. Signatures: Include spaces for all parties to sign and date the agreement.

Legal Considerations

When combining these agreements, keep the following legal considerations in mind:

  • State Laws: Some states have specific laws regarding non-compete clauses. For instance, California generally does not enforce non-compete agreements. Ensure your combined agreement complies with local laws.
  • Reasonableness: Courts often scrutinize the reasonableness of non-compete terms. Ensure the duration, geographical scope, and activities restricted are fair and justifiable.
  • Consult a Lawyer: While you can draft a combined non compete and non disclosure agreement template yourself, consulting a lawyer ensures it is legally sound and enforceable.

By combining Non-Compete and Non-Disclosure Agreements, you simplify your legal framework while ensuring comprehensive protection for your business.

Next, we'll walk you through a step-by-step guide to creating a Non-Compete and Non-Disclosure Agreement to make the process even easier.

Step-by-Step Guide to Creating a Non-Compete and Non-Disclosure Agreement

Creating a combined non compete and non disclosure agreement template might seem daunting, but breaking it down into simple steps makes it manageable. Follow this guide to ensure your agreement is thorough and enforceable.

Identify Parties

Start by clearly identifying all parties involved. This includes the disclosing party (often the employer) and the receiving party (usually the employee). Make sure to use full legal names and include contact details.

Define Terms

Define key terms used in the agreement. This could include "Confidential Information," "Competing Business," and any other specific terms relevant to your industry. Clear definitions prevent misunderstandings.

Specify Scope

Detail what types of information are considered confidential. This could be business strategies, financial data, or technical processes. Be specific to avoid ambiguity.

Outline Duration

Specify how long the agreement will be in effect. This can range from a few years to an indefinite period, depending on the sensitivity of the information. For example, trade secrets might require indefinite protection.

Geographical Limitations

Define the geographical scope of the non-compete clause. This could be local, national, or even international, depending on your business needs. Ensure the scope is reasonable and justifiable.

Include Consideration

Consideration is what the employee receives in return for agreeing to the terms. This could be a job offer, a promotion, or a special bonus. Clearly state this in the agreement to make it legally binding.

Confidentiality Clauses

Detail the obligations of the receiving party regarding the confidential information. This includes keeping the information secret, using it only for specified purposes, and preventing unauthorized access.

Non-Solicitation Clauses

Include a non-solicitation clause to prevent the employee from poaching clients or other employees. Specify the duration and scope of this clause to ensure it is reasonable.

Purchase of Release

Outline the conditions under which the employee can be released from the non-compete clause. This could involve a financial payment or other considerations.

Governing Law

Specify which state's laws will govern the agreement. This is crucial because laws regarding non-compete and non-disclosure agreements vary by state. For instance, California has strict rules that often do not enforce non-compete clauses.

By following these steps, you can create a robust non compete and non disclosure agreement template that protects your business interests and complies with legal standards.

Next, we'll address some frequently asked questions about Non-Compete and Non-Disclosure Agreements to clear up any lingering doubts.

Frequently Asked Questions about Non-Compete and Non-Disclosure Agreements

Can an NDA have a non-compete clause?

Yes, an NDA can include a non-compete clause. While an NDA (Non-Disclosure Agreement) focuses primarily on protecting confidential information, adding a non-compete clause can provide extra protection. This clause restricts the recipient from engaging in activities that compete with the disclosing party's business. However, it’s crucial to remember that the enforceability of non-compete clauses varies by state. For example, California generally does not enforce non-compete clauses. Always check your state laws to ensure compliance.

How do you write a non-compete agreement?

Writing a non-compete agreement involves several key steps:

  1. Identify the Parties: Clearly state who is involved, including the employer and the employee.
  2. Define the Scope: Specify what activities are restricted. This could include working for competitors or starting a similar business.
  3. Outline the Duration: State how long the non-compete will last after the employment ends. Common durations range from six months to two years.
  4. Geographical Limitations: Define the area where the restrictions apply. This could be a specific city, state, or a broader region.
  5. Legitimate Business Interests: Explain why the non-compete is necessary to protect the business. This could include protecting trade secrets, customer relationships, or proprietary information.
  6. Consideration: Ensure there is a benefit provided to the employee in exchange for agreeing to the non-compete. This could be continued employment, a bonus, or other considerations.

Make sure the terms are reasonable and specific to avoid potential legal challenges.

Will non-compete agreements be banned in 2024?

As of April 23, 2024, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has issued a final rule banning non-compete clauses for the majority of workers. This rule aims to protect workers' freedom to change jobs, increase innovation, and generate new business. The ban will make existing non-competes unenforceable for most employees, although there may be exceptions for senior executives.

This significant change means that employers will need to find alternative ways to protect their business interests, such as through robust NDAs and other contractual protections.

Next, we’ll dive into the conclusion and discuss how KickSaaS Legal can help you create effective agreements tailored to your specific needs.


Creating effective non-compete and non-disclosure agreements is crucial for protecting your business interests. With the evolving legal landscape, it's more important than ever to ensure your agreements are both robust and compliant. That's where KickSaaS Legal comes in.

Why Choose KickSaaS Legal?

Industry Expertise: Our deep understanding of the SaaS and legal domains equips us with a unique perspective. We know the ins and outs of the industry, allowing us to tailor our templates and advice to meet your specific needs. This specialized knowledge ensures your contracts are not only legally sound but also aligned with industry standards and best practices.

Flat-Fee Pricing: Transparency and predictability in billing are key. Our flat-fee pricing model means you know exactly what you're paying upfront, with no hidden costs or surprises. This approach allows you to budget effectively and invest in our services with confidence.

Comprehensive Contract Templates: Our extensive library of customizable contract templates caters to a wide range of needs, from startups to established enterprises. Each template is crafted with attention to detail and industry specifics, ensuring you start with a solid foundation. Explore our contract templates to find the perfect fit for your business.

Meet CEO Chris Lyle

Benefit from the expertise of Chris Lyle, a seasoned intellectual property attorney and digital business owner. Chris's experience and insights ensure that your agreements are both effective and strategically aligned with your business objectives.

In conclusion, KickSaaS Legal is not just a provider of legal services; we are your partner in navigating the complex landscape of SaaS agreements. Our combination of legal expertise, industry knowledge, and innovative technology ensures that your contracts are compliant and strategically aligned with your business goals.

Let us help you streamline your contract management process for better efficiency and peace of mind. Check out our services and take the first step towards securing your business with solid, effective SaaS contracts.

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