The Defend Trade Secrets Act: A Powerful Tool for Protecting ‘Secret Sauce’ Comes With Affirmative Obligations
On May 11, President Obama signed the Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA) into law, which was passed as part of a bipartisan effort in the House and Senate. The new law, which is an amendment to the DTSA first enacted in 2012, creates a federal civil cause of action for trade secret misappropriation that can be filed in federal district courts. In its original iteration, the DTSA merely authorized the Department of Justice to bring criminal cases for misappropriation of trade secrets. The DTSA now provides powerful tools for companies seeking to protect their trade secrets by making available an immediate court order for seizure of misappropriated trade secrets, and the recovery of exemplary damages and attorneys’ fees. Some of these powerful remedies may be lost, however, if an employer does not meet new notice requirements to employees concerning the rights of whistleblowers.
For more information, please contact the Intellectual Property and Technology, and Labor and Employment Practice Groups at Lane Powell: