Saswatabanerjee
Partner - Risk Management
Kishor_goswami
Advocate & Labour Law Consultants
Tajsateesh
Recruitment/talent Acquisition, Career Counselling
Sushilkluthra@gmail.com
Consultant In Legal Matters
+1 Other

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Hello Team,
Greetings to all. I was working with 100 people company offering cloud solutions, as Technical Product Manager. I left the company in Oct 2014 and my last salary was held due to F&F.
Now when I started asking about my dues, they are asking me to sign non-compete agreement & giving a reason that it is company policy and without signing, my dues will not be released.
Can anybody help me about this? can a company do that and change policies once employee has gone out of company?
Awaiting.
Regds

F&F settlement should have been done in October, 2014. No need to sign the non- compete agreement now. If the employer does pay send him registered letter to pay dues immediately. If he does not do approach the inspector under shops and establishments Act
Thanks
Sushil

The action of the company is illegal. Non compete agreement with an employee is illegal amounting to violations of constitutional right to employment.
The non compete agreement is valid only for promotors, shareholders and business owners who have sold their business.
There is no provision to hold back payments on this ground. You can talk to them on this or complain to the labor officer in your region. Technically speaking you can sign the agreement and then do what you want because the agreement is not valid and enforceable. However in that case speak to a good lawyer first

you send them legal notice through lawyer demanding your full and final settlement and/or indafault file a case in court of law for MRTP & PULP ACT yours truly, Adv.Goswami.
I am not really sure IF what Saswata Banerjee mentioned is correct--"Non compete agreement with an employee is illegal....."--since most technology Companies have this in place for employees along with Non-Disclosure Agreements.
Having said that, I too think what your earlier Company did was absolutely WRONG--for the simple reason that you have left it & any changes/amendments to HR/Company Policies CAN'T be with Retrospective effect to those who left.
However, pl clarify WHETHER there was any mention of such a clause in your Appointment Letter--when you joined them? If No, either they are trying to pull a fast one on you OR they are plain dumb.
Like the other members suggested just go legal--BUT in most cases, the very mention of 'I plan to go legal' should suffice. But, BEFORE THAT pl ensure you have their request IN WRITING [thru email, letter, etc]. Else, you COULD create another problem while trying to solve this.
All the Best.
Rgds,
TS

In VFS Global Services Pvt Ltd v Mr Suprit Roy decided in 2007 by the Bombay HC the distinction between non compete clause and non disclosure clause is evidently set out and former is held to be void in restraint of trade, business or profession whereas the injunction pertaining to later clause was granted.
Thanks
Sushil

Hi,
Thank you everybody for the valuable reply... I am on good terms with HR of the company. It is not his decision, but his seniors are pressing him for that. According to him, they have defined 'Competition' and according to that, I cannot join the company which is doing same business (which is obvious) i.e. of service provider. But I can join anywhere else, who is not service provider, but service taker.
I somehow understand this point, but still confused, whether to sign anything in black and white or not...!!
Regds/

There is nothing mentioned of this kind in my Appointment letter, However, while I signed policies, there was a mention that, "Any change in policies, will be informed to us and will be automatically binding on us....." in short management decision is final and binding on us..
After quitting your job, the employer should have done full and final settlement immediately. Since Payment of Wages Act is applicable to your establishment under section 38 of the Bombay Shops and establishment Act whereunder if there is delay in payment of wages, the inspector can be approached.Thus make a complaint to the inspector under the Bombay Act. As regards HR insistence upon you to sign the agreement of non compete, tell the manager that it is illegal to get signed under section 27 of Contract Act. Further it amounts to cheating under section 420 IPC because he wants to deprive you of your valuable security of appointment letter by virtue of which you were entitled to full and final settlement irrespective of non compete agreement. Send a legal notice to former employer.
Thanks
Sushil

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