The attorneys at the Law Offices of Arthur K. Smith, A Professional Corporation, provide the following answers to questions frequently encountered as we provide business litigation representation to businesses throughout the Dallas Fort Worth Metroplex. If you have further questions or need legal advice and representation in a particular matter, please contact the Law Offices of Arthur K. Smith to speak with one of our qualified and capable lawyers.
Q. What alternatives to litigation are there to resolve my business dispute?
A. There are many legal options to resolving a dispute, including negotiation, mediation, and arbitration. These means range from the informal to the very formal; arbitration, for instance, resembles litigation in many respects. Forms of alternative dispute resolution offer many benefits: they are often quicker and less expensive than litigation, and there is more opportunity for the parties to collaborate on a solution, which is therefore more likely to be successfully implemented.
However, you shouldn’t be afraid to litigate, either. Sometimes litigation is the most efficient or the most effective way to resolve a dispute. Even where the dispute is with a business partner or other party with whom you need to maintain an ongoing business relationship, we consider that factor in our approach to resolution whether through litigation or other means. What is most important is that the dispute be resolved successfully with your rights and interests intact.
Q. Are covenants not to compete enforceable agreements?
A. Yes. According to Texas law (Business and Commerce Code Section 15.50), a covenant not to compete is enforceable if it is part of or ancillary to an otherwise enforceable agreement at the time it is made. The agreement must be reasonably limited to as to the duration of the covenant, the geographic area covered, and the scope of the activity which is restrained. Also, the covenant cannot be any more restrictive than is necessary to protect the goodwill or other business interest of the company.