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Unformatted text preview: hires and trains Sarah, under a contract that specifies if Sarah leaves ABC, she cannot work in the same industry in the state of Wisconsin for five years.
The law will typically scrutinize both time and geographic limit. This contract appears to be overly broad. Forbidding her from working in an entire state and for such a long period will seriously impact Sarah’s ability to work. Some jurisdictions will invalidate the contract completely, leaving Sarah free to set up shop next door to ABC and compete directly with them, tomorrow! Others take a “blue pencil” approach, and rewrite the clause and enforce it as a reasonable restriction, such as barring Sarah from competing in the Milwaukee metro area where ABC is located, for one year.
Another example of a contract clause that is sometimes void against public policy is an exculpatory clause, which says that one party will not be liable, even if he is negligent. These clauses will not be enforced if the situation involves deliberate misconduct, gross negligence, or a public duty....
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