FLORIDA NON-COMPETE AGREEMENTS: CAN A LOST OR STOLEN AGREEMENT BE ENFORCED?

Under Florida law, a restrictive covenant is not enforceable “unless it is set forth in a writing signed by the person against whom enforcement is sought.” Fla. Stat. § 542.335(1)(a).  So, what happens if the written agreement is lost, destroyed or stolen? Generally, the loss or unintentional destruction of a written document does not affect the validity of the transaction of which it is the evidence, or the rights and liabilities of the parties to the instrument. Environmental Services, Inc. v. Carter, 9 So. 3d 1258 (Fla. 5th DCA 2009). Peter Mavrick is a Fort Lauderdale non-compete lawyer who has successfully defended many lawsuits involving non-competition, non-solicitation, and non-disclosure contracts. In Environmental Services, Inc. v. Carter, Environmental Services, Inc. (“ESI”) sued to enforce a non-solicitation agreement against its former employee, Daniel Lejeune (“Lejeune”). ESI was unable to produce the actual signed…

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