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Kaine Statement on FTC Rule to Ban Non-Compete Agreements

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Tim Kaine released the following statement after the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) released a finalized rule banning employers from imposing non-compete agreements on their employees. Kaine applauded the proposed rule last January.

“If we want to continue to grow our economy, we must protect and empower American workers. I’m glad the Federal Trade Commission is taking this step to ban non-compete agreements, which stifle wage growth, hinder job mobility, and make it harder for businesses to hire talent. This will expand job opportunities for more Americans, increase wages, promote innovation, and support our country’s economic growth.”

Today’s rule will mean more workers in Virginia are protected from non-compete agreements, which block workers from working for a competing employer or starting a competing business. Currently, non-competes are banned in the Commonwealth for workers earning $73,000 or less per year. The rule includes an exception to allow existing non-compete agreements to remain in place for senior executives.

Almost one in five American workers – 30 million people – are constrained by a non-compete agreement. Research indicates that workers trapped by non-competes have lower wages, and their restricted mobility makes it more difficult for businesses to recruit talent. In states where non-competes are enforced, young firms are more likely to die in their first three years compared to states where they are not enforced.

Last Congress, Kaine joined his colleagues in introducing the Workforce Mobility Act, bipartisan legislation to limit the use of non-compete agreements.