Laid off, NDA/non-compete question

Hello dear ladies,

Hope you're well in this climate!

I was let go from my job last month with a 12 month non-compete that I signed prior to starting at the company; it seems to cover every industry and contact that I have made or touched in the last 7 months of working at the agency. It feels as if all 7 months of the work I did have gone to waste (besides experience of course). Namely, there are multiple high-level relationships with great brands and companies I made and I feel as if I cannot even talk to them!

I please need advise and assistance on understanding how enforceable non-compete are - does anyone have similar experience and have tips? As well as any lawyers that could provide advice without charging me an arm and a leg?

Truly grateful for your eyes and support here!

Definitely consider having an employment lawyer take a look.I'm no lawyer but here are some thoughts.It's the noncompete section that's usually the most important when finding your next role.I would read it carefully to see exactly what you are restricted from doing. This often includes not soliciting clients to a new business or employees to leave the firm. You may be restricted from going to work for a client for that period of time. That doesn't automatically mean you can't talk to them at all. They are in your network. Also it matters what state you are in. Some states don't permit noncompetes or make them unenforceable.
Hey there! Lawyer here: It depends on what state you're in and also on the terms of the agreement. I used to handle a lot of these agreements and litigation back in the day so feel free to DM me!
DMing you now!
I second the advice to have an employment lawyer take a look at your contract. Depending on the laws of the state you're in, many courts look down upon overly restrictive non-competes that would severely restrict your ability to make a living, and so even if the contract is written a certain way, you could actually take it to court to have it overthrown - or, what usually happens, the company will settle with you.
Definitely speak with a lawyer! I was told years ago that non-compete clauses aren't even legal in my state.
They are generally unenforceable, especially if you live in an employee rights state. Definitely have a lawyer look at it!
From a practical standpoint, if they are in enough financial trouble that they are laying people off, they probably don't care if you violate the non-compete and likely don't even have enough resources to enforce it.What exactly are you looking to do? If you just want to network with the people you've met in the past 7 months and see if anyone is hiring, I'd say go for it, just don't bad-mouth your former employer (perhaps make it sound like you left voluntarily, or just be super vague).Whereas if you were starting your own agency and stealing their clients, that's probably when they'd go after you.I'm guessing their lawyer gave them some boilerplate language that they threw into your employment agreement without thinking through the scenario of a layoff.Going against the grain here, but I'd say do whatever you need to find a new job, and only talk to an employment lawyer if your former employer comes after you (it would also be sort of a PR nightmare for them to go after you if they fired you).
I would be cautious and talk to a lawyer to make sure. I'm biased. I have a law degree, but I don't practice. Good luck.