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  1. #1

    Cool Can I Work for 2 Competing Companies at the Same Time Legally

    Hey guys,

    I am currently working for a large national test prep company here in California. However, they are not giving me enough hours to make a decent wage to support myself (scheduling conflicts).

    I was interested in working for a smaller local test prep company that is in direct competition with the large company so that I can make enough money.

    I was wondering if this was legal.

    I know that the non-compete law here in California forbids businesses from preventing or punishing a FORMER employee from working at a competing business, but does it protect people who are working for two competing companies SIMULTANEOUSLY?

    In addition, I was interested in opening up a business in the same field as both of these companies (test prep) in the next year. Do I have to stop working at either or both of these companies in order to legally create my business?

    Any help would be greatly appreciated!

    If possible, can you guys direct me to an actual legal document that provides evidence for an answer?


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Merida, Mexico

    Default Re: California: Can I Work for 2 Competing Companies at the Same Time Legally

    You won't find a "legal document" on this because there isn't one - there are no laws that state employees may or may not work for more than one company, even competing companies, at any given time. So if there's no law against it (and there isn't), then what you propose to do is legal. And because there's no law against it, there's no "legal document."

    But while it's perfectly legal for you to work for competing companies (including your own) all at the same time, in an at-will environment, it's also perfectly legal for one or both of your employers to fire you for working for the other employer. In an at-will environment, employers may legally fire their employees for participating in certain activities, even if those activities are perfectly legal.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Behind a Desk

    Default Re: Can I Work for 2 Competing Companies at the Same Time Legally

    Legally, as in can you be arrested? No, you can't be arrested for working for two competing private companies.

    But either or both of your employers can fire you for working for a competitor.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2010

    Default Re: Can I Work for 2 Competing Companies at the Same Time Legally

    That provision doesn't apply to you. Companies are free to fire you for the conflict of interest.

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