The shareholders of the small tax and estate planning boutique where I work recently indicated that they would pay for me to get a tax LLM if I'll agree to sign a non-competition agreement (which are enforceable in my state). I feel perfectly at home at my firm (great hours, good pay, solid cultural fit, diverse and interesting work) and I am happy to take the deal, but I don't want to be an idiot about it. The idea is that I'd study remotely part-time while continuing to work. I'm looking for some advice on the following questions:

1. Customarily, how long do non-competes for tax LLMs last?
2. Were you able to negotiate for fewer billable hours to accommodate your studies? How much time do you need to carve out to do a 2-year program justice? A 4-year program?
3. What kinds of liquidated damages are customary? I would imagine it'd be something like a fixed dollar amount reduced by a certain amount each year, but I just don't know.
4. Did your employer attempt to exert some control over your course selection? If so, how much?
5. My firm is so small that it doesn't have an established process for this. For anyone whose firm has a standard "we cover your LLM" procedure, what does that procedure look like?

Any guidance or advice would be appreciated.

A few additional pieces about my situation:
■ I do not have a nearby LLM program and my spouse's career makes moving undesirable, so in-person programs are out.
■ I don't have the wherewithal to pay my own way. (*kicks self for declining offer from V20 firm*).
■ I am not particularly interested in changing jobs because I get all my nights and weekends with my family and I don't have to participate in a colossal bureaucracy. (*forgives self for turning down V20 firm*).
■ I suspect I am being groomed to take over the lead estate planning partner's book of business over the next 5-10 years as he slides into retirement.
■ I am competitive for most tax programs (summa/top 1% from T70, law review E-Board, published note on Treasury regs, worked for V20 firm, relevant experience in tax and financial regulation, federal judicial extern at the circuit level, fistful of CALI awards, etc.). Nevertheless, I question whether a name-brand program is as helpful for someone like me who practices in a relatively small market; isn't interested in moving over to a big firm, a consultancy, or the government; and focuses so heavily on estate planning. If NYU passes on me, why not do Florida or Heckerling and say to hell with Georgetown or Northwestern?