Restraint of trade

Can anyone help me? I need to know if a restaint of trade is legal in Taiwan. my ARC expires in two months, and on Tuesday my boss made me sign a contract under duress (she told me she wouldnt pay me unless I signed the contract) which has a clause precluding me from working within the same county for a period of one year and making me liable for legal action and or a fine of 100 000 nt.

The reason that I hadnt wanted to sign the contract were that it was a second term contract (i.e. she ought to have given it to me 10 months ago,) and there were clauses that I didnt agree to and that were not in my original contract.

I would really appreciate some input.

It sounds like you are describing a non-competition provision. These have become very popular in Taiwan recently, but few employers know how to draft them and they are too cheap to hire a lawyer to do it right. So you may be in luck.

Generally, the courts here won’t enforce a non-competition provision unless the contract specifies

  1. How long you have to wait before you take a similar job

  2. The geographical region you can’t take a similar job in.

  3. (this is the important one) the special compensation you are receiving for agreeing to this. Let’s say your salary was NT$80,000/month last year. Under the new contract, that is bumped up to say NT$140.000 in return for your agreeing not to go work for someone else. It could also be stock options or the like, but they have to be giving you something extra.



I’m not a lawyer and this is not legal advice.

Thanks for your help - I checked the clause again and the time is not specified, the geographical region is, but I am certainly not being offered any compensation, so I will take my chances since I seriously don’t think it will stand up in court.

Thanks again.