On March 7, 2019, a group of six United States senators from both sides of the aisle submitted a letter to the Government Accountability Office (GAO) requesting a federal investigation into the use of non-compete agreements on the basis that their widening use in recent years raises concerns about their negative impact on both workers and the national economy. Specifically, the letter asks the GAO to assess the following three questions:
- What is known about the prevalence of non-compete agreements in particular fields, including low-wage occupations?
- What is known about the effects of non-compete agreements on the workforce and the economy, including employment, wages and benefits, innovation, and entrepreneurship?
- What steps have selected states taken to limit the use of these agreements, and what is known about the effect these actions have had on employees and employers?