Confidential Information

News & Analysis as of

Recent Developments that Prohibit Common Separation and Settlement Agreement Provisions

Two federal agencies recently challenged the validity of what many would consider standard release agreement provisions. On August 10, 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) fined a company for including...more

Can privileged settlement negotiations be used to prove a hostile work environment?

In Shaw Communications Inc. and Unifor, Local M1, Re, 2016 CarswellNat 4032 (Saunders), a dispute arose following an employee’s allegation of harassment against a coworker. The employee filed a harassment complaint, and then...more

Trade Secrets: Changes In The Law On Protection Of Trade Secrets In The United States And European Union

Concerns about trade secret theft have been increasing in both the United States and Europe in recent years. Traditionally, American law disfavored trade secret protection vis à vis patenting on the basis that publication of...more

District Court Denies Request to Preclude Defendant from Sharing Confidential Information of Plaintiff with PTAB as part of Inter...

In this patent infringement action between Ultratec and CaptionCall, CaptionCall filed a motion for relief from the stipulated protective order in order to use confidential commercial information from Ultratec (the...more

Redacting Confidential Portions – After the Fact

A recent blog highlighted the benefit of designating confidential portions to be redacted while at the deposition. Portions designated as such are redacted at no cost. So, depending on the size of the case and the extent of...more

CFPB Wants to Share Its Confidential Information with the World

On August 24, 2016, the CFPB published proposed amendments to broaden its ability to share confidential information with agencies. If the proposed rule is finalized, the CFPB would be permitted to share information with...more

Three Big Reasons Government Contractors Should Complete Seller-Side Due Diligence

If approached properly, selling your business will rank among the most significant and rewarding moves of your career, representing the culmination of years of patience, hard work and vision. Whether you are planning a sale...more

Physicians Must Be Cautious When Responding To A Subpoena or Request for Medical Records

Doctors must educate themselves and particularly their staff on the legal obligations to protect the confidentiality of medical records and how to properly respond to subpoenas and requests for patients’ health information....more

Defend Trade Secrets Act – What Employers Need to Know

On May 11, 2016, President Obama signed the Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016 (the “DTSA” or the “Act”) into law. Prior to enactment of the DTSA, the law governing trade secrets was left to the states, most of which have...more

Copying Legal Counsel Doesn’t Create Privileged Communication

The attorney-client privilege is a long-standing and well-established principle that protects certain communication between client and attorney from disclosure. With the increased use of email, clients may often copy their...more

Companies Should Review Employee Agreements and Policies Following SEC's Aggressive Stance on Impediments to Whistleblowing

In two recently announced settlements, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) adopted a strict interpretation of the whistleblower protections afforded under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer...more

Breaches Of Covenants Not To Compete As Unfair And Deceptive Practices? The North Carolina Business Court Weighs In

When does a breach of a covenant not to compete violate N.C. Gen. Stat. § 75-1.1? Is tortious interference a per se violation of section 75-1.1? Departing-employee cases often raise both questions, but the answer to each...more

CFPB Proposed Rule Could Allow Agencies without Jurisdiction to Access CSI

The CFPB issued a proposed rule which significantly affects third-party access to information obtained by the Bureau. In addition to public requests under the Freedom of Information Act, the Privacy Act of 1974 and in legal...more

SEC Fines Company for Agreements Restricting Whistleblowers

The SEC has fined an Atlanta company $265,000 for using various severance agreements restricting whistleblower activities. The Dodd-Frank Act added ’34 Act § 21F encouraging whistleblower programs. The SEC adopted Rule...more

A Rose by Any Other Name is Not as Sweet: When a Non-Solicit is Actually a Non-Compete

The Ontario Court of Appeal has held that the words “accept business”, in what the employer intended to be a non-solicitation clause, served to restrict competition and is therefore not merely a non-solicitation...more

Company's Position Taken in Bankruptcy Voids Noncompete Obligations

The Delaware Court of Chancery's decision in Hipcricket v. mGage, C.A. No. 11135-CB, (Del. Ch. July 15, 2016), highlights the importance of coordinating the positions taken in different legal proceedings. The plaintiff in...more

Sixth Circuit Denies Seal of Approval for Unjustified Filings Under Seal

Litigants and third parties subpoenaed to produce information in litigation who believe that information that they deem confidential will not ever become part of the public record so long as a discovery protective order is in...more

Texas Appellate Court Affirms Injunctive Relief and $2.8 Million Award in Attorney’s Fees Against Former Employee in Trade Secret...

A Texas Court of Appeals held on August 22, 2016, that a former employer was entitled to $2.8 million in attorney’s fees against a former employee who used the employer’s information to compete against it. The Court reached...more

CFPB Proposal to Relax Standards for the Discretionary Disclosure of Confidential Supervisory Information

In a proposed rule set forth in the August 24, 2016 Federal Register, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (Bureau) suggests “amendments relating to the disclosure of records and information.” While the proposal touches...more

New flexibility in professional secrecy?

Standing in between provisions implementing the Multi-Interchange Regulation and other reformatting and errata regarding various Luxembourg laws of the financial sector, article 14 of the bill of law n°7024 (the Bill of Law...more

Why You May Want To Reconsider Promising Confidentiality To Whistleblowers

In this recent post, I suggested that absolute guarantees of confidentiality to whistleblowers may be counterproductive. In today’s post, I will elaborate on why....more

Please Don’t Do This With Your US NDAs

Over the past two weeks, I’ve reviewed two non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) for Northern Irish companies that are expanding to the US. I’ve written about NDAs in the past: NDAs and You: Perfect Together. The NDAs were...more

Attention, Businesses! Federal Law Provides New Tools for Protecting Your Trade Secrets

Your business’s formula for success may not be akin to a recipe for a secret sauce. But it is likely that you do not want to share with your direct competitors the unique business methods you have developed over time or your...more

NLRB Ruling in Social Media Case Provides Useful Guidance for Employers

Drafting a social media policy in compliance with Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act (“NLRA” or “the Act”) has become increasingly challenging for employers, as the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB” or “the...more

Franchise Relationships, Personal Information and Trade Secret Liability

Corporate entities that share confidential personal information with each other, including those in franchise relationships, should strongly consider potential privacy and trade secret risks and consider available alternative...more

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