Safeguarding your business' trade secrets

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Originally published in The Enterprise - Utah’s Business Journal - July 16-22, 2012 - Volume 41, Number 48.

One of the consequences of being in a state that has an extremely well educated population combined with a strong entrepreneurial spirit is that new opportunities frequently attract talented employees away from their current positions. Employees moving from one company to another or choosing to strike out on their own and start up their own venture creates a ripe atmosphere for trade secret violations. Because such violations can have a devastating impact on the departed company and create unfair competition, the Utah legislature has enacted the Uniform Trade Secrets Act.

This act not only helps define the vague concept of a “trade secret,” it provides victims of trade secret theft a mechanism to reap justice on the offender. Specifically, successful plaintiffs in a trade secret action may be entitled to (1) injunctive relief, barring the offending parties from using the stolen trade secret; (2) a judgment requiring the offenders to compensate the plaintiff for the damages caused by the theft; (3) an award of exemplary damages; and (4) attorney’s fees.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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