Listen up doctors! Physicians and physician practices who are currently negotiating employment agreements, partnership agreements or otherwise joining a practice need to be aware of a recent law passed by Connecticut's General Assembly. The law - which everyone expects Governor Molloy to sign - limits non-compete agreements for physicians to 15 miles in geographic scope and 1 year in duration. The bill, which you can read here, applies to covenants not to compete that are entered into, amended, extended, or renewed after July 1, 2016. Importantly, the new law will impact physician-employers who simply employ doctors without the anticipation of giving the doctor an ownership interest in the practice. In those cases, the covenant not to compete can be enforced only if the physician's employer offers to renew the employment contract (if it expires) or terminates the physician-employee for cause.
This new law joins other Connecticut statutes that address covenants not to compete for other occupations such as security guards (Conn. Gen. Stat. § 31-50b) and broadcast employees (Conn. Gen. Stat. § 31-50a).
Physicians and physician practices must consider the impact of this new law in negotiating new contracts, or extending or renewing current contracts, especially language governing "for cause" termination.