Trade Secrets

A Trade Secret is any information, not generally known or easily ascertainable, by which an enterprise develops an economic advantage over competitors or customers. In order to maintain trade secrets'... more +
A Trade Secret is any information, not generally known or easily ascertainable, by which an enterprise develops an economic advantage over competitors or customers. In order to maintain trade secrets' protected legal status, enterprises must make reasonable efforts to keep the information secret and prevent unnecessary disclosure.  Trade Secrets may include processes, formulas, methods, designs, patterns, et cetera.   less -
News & Analysis as of

District Court Denies Motion in Limine Seeking to Preclude Advice of Counsel Defense Even Though Plaintiff Was not Able to Obtain...

The Plaintiff filed a motion in limine seeking the district court to preclude the Defendant from offering at trial any testimony regarding the Defendant's opinion of counsel defense that was not disclosed during discovery. As...more

STOP, THIEF! - How to Keep Your “Secret Sauce” In-House, When an Employee Is Lured to Greener Pastures

No matter how collegial and successful a workplace you have created for your employees, attrition is an inevitable fact of life in business, and in government contracting in particular. ...more

Thirty-Year-Old Conspiracy to Misappropriate Trade Secrets Lives On - ABB Turbo Sys. AG, et al. v. TurboUSA, et al.

Addressing the standard for pleading trade secret misappropriation and conspiracy under Florida law, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit reversed an order from the U.S. District Court for the Southern District...more

Is your confidential information “property” if it does not qualify as a trade secret?

The answer likely is “no” according to a recent decision from a federal court in San Francisco. The plaintiff in that case, a data storage company, alleged that a competitor misappropriated its trade secrets by illegally...more

European Trade Secrets Directive Looks to Unify and Strengthen Protection of Proprietary Business Information in the EU

Home to several of the world’s largest OEMs, and a major place of operations for others, Europe has a thriving automotive industry. As borders have become more and more open in the European Union, OEMs and their suppliers...more

Remote Controlled: Keeping Trade Secrets Safe While Employees Work Remotely

One of the biggest challenges the cyber-security field faces today—aside from outright hacking—is the fact that employees’ data is increasingly portable. Data portability can be a major boon for employers. For instance, it...more

Settlement Reached in Wyoming Fracking Disclosure Lawsuit: Heavier Burden of Proof for Companies Claiming Trade Secret or...

As we’ve previously discussed, a patchwork of state regulations requiring disclosure of chemicals used in fracking have been enacted by several states in recent years. One such regulation was by the State of Wyoming. While...more

Craft Brewery Intellectual Property Primer

A. Introduction - A name. It all starts with a name. A series of words, individually with little meaning, but collectively, the embodiment of creativity, passion, and inspiration. Whether the name of the craft brewery...more

Russian Perspective: Can Sending Confidential Information to Your Personal Email Address Constitute a Disclosure of a Trade...

Imagine that you are the General Director of a company (the Russian equivalent of an American CEO), and your information security department finds out that an employee, who you have long suspected of industrial espionage, has...more

Has the "Inevitable Disclosure" Doctrine Found a Foothold in North Carolina?

Twenty years ago, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in PepsiCo, Inc. v. Redmond, 54 F.3d 1262 (7th Cir. 1995) advanced the “inevitable disclosure” doctrine in trade secret misappropriation cases. The doctrine essentially...more

Company’s Bacon Trade Secret Claims Are Cooked After Patent Filing

From Minnesota comes a delicious reminder that the protection of trade secrets requires consideration of a company’s entire intellectual property strategy.  Without such a comprehensive strategy, in the most prosaic of terms,...more

Get smart when tackling estate planning for intellectual property

How should one account for intellectual property (IP), such as a patent or copyright, in their estate plan? These intangible assets can be highly valuable, and they should be handled according to the owner’s wishes. This...more

Former Licensee Knocks Wind Out Of Sail Manufacturer’s Trade Secrets Claims

In the fiercely competitive world of professional sailing, every second matters. And, as with any sport, competitors look to gain any advantage they can by getting their hands on the latest equipment, fine-tuned to give them...more

The Prospect of a Federal Trade Secret Claim

Trade secrets constitute the only category of intellectual property that is governed primarily by state law. This status may soon change—two bills, House Bill 5233 and Senate Bill 2267 were introduced in Congress last term to...more

The spy who came in from the kitchen…

Offering workers the opportunity to work from home has many benefits for both the employee and employer, but it can bring challenges as well. One challenge is handling trade secrets, which are defined as any information that...more

Corporate Hacking and the Financial Services Industry

The question is not whether you are going to be hacked, but rather when and how often. That thinking is so pervasive in the cyber-security industry that industry participants now refer to “cyber-resilience” to better describe...more

Bernstein Shur Business and Commercial Litigation Newsletter #48

We are pleased to present the 48th edition of the Bernstein Shur Business and Commercial Litigation Newsletter. This month, we highlight recent cases that address the common interest doctrine, the statute of limitations for...more

SHREDDING TRADE SECRETS: Heli-Ski Operators Fret over FOIA Disclosures Releasing a Blizzard of Confidential Information

Heli-skiing: it’s the holy grail for thrill-seeking skiers and snowboarders.   Ride to the roof of the world aboard a helicopter. Descend thousands of vertical feet through fresh, untracked powder.  No lift lines, no ski...more

Chicago Court Hands Out Harsh Sentences for Hedge Fund Trade Secret Theft

Following earlier plea agreements, “Ben” Pu (“Pu”) and Sahil “Sonny” Uppal (“Uppal”) were sentenced today for stealing trade secrets related to high-frequency trading platforms from Chicago-based hedge fund Citadel. In what...more

Supreme Court of Arizona Weighs in on the Preemption Provision of the State’s Trade Secrets Act

Orca Communications Unlimited, LLC v. Noder - The Uniform Trade Secrets Act’s (UTSA) displacement provision creates an exclusive cause of action for claims based on misappropriation of trade secrets and preempts...more

The View from the Beltway: USPTO Symposium Highlights Increasing Economic Importance of Trade Secrets, Likelihood of Federal...

On January 8, 2015, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) hosted its first-ever event on trade secrets.  As we noted when we announced news of the event, the mere fact that the USPTO, an office whose primary...more

New Opposition to the EU Trade Secrets Directive

Not everyone is happy about the proposed EU Trade Secrets Directive.  When we last touched on this topic a couple of months ago, the European Union looked poised to enact a sweeping new legal regime that would harmonize trade...more

Low Octane Levels? Octane Fitness’ Impact in the Trademark and Trade Secret Realms

We have previously addressed the Supreme Court’s decision in Octane Fitness, LLC v. Icon Health & Fitness, Inc., 12-1184, Slip Op. at 7 (2014), which relaxed the standard for awarding attorney’s fees under Section 285 of the...more

Amended Complaints and Industry Standards

Can a party who is accused of an unfair trade practice raise the same defense? That is, can a business avoid section 75-1.1 liability by proving that the plaintiff business engages in the same allegedly unfair conduct?...more

Trade Secrets And 3rd Parties: Litigation Traps To Avoid

Many companies have developed trade secrets policies to protect their valuable information, but even forward-thinking companies may not have internal controls to avoid liability as third parties to alleged trade secret...more

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