Using Physician Noncompete Agreements in Washington

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Stoel Rives attorney James Shore discusses in a Washington Healthcare News article the application of physician noncompete agreements in Washington State. Healthcare employers commonly require physicians to agree to restrictive covenants as a condition of employment in order to protect their valuable assets (patients, goodwill and confidential information) and investments (recruiting, training and development costs).

Shore describes the necessary conditions for a noncompete agreement to be enforceable. Under Washington law, noncompete agreements must be "reasonable," a test that is satisfied if the agreement is (1) necessary to protect a legitimate business interest; (2) no greater than reasonably necessary to secure the employer's business or goodwill; and (3) the degree of injury to the public in the loss of the service and skill of the physician is so small as to warrant enforcement.

 Read Shore's full discussion of physician noncompete agreements (PDF)

"Using Physician Noncompete Agreements in Washington" was published by Washington Healthcare News, November 2010.

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James M. Shore
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