Corporate Mole Bound by Preliminary Injunction

By Bill Wright We’ve seen it over and over.  Employees, including top sales people, leave their job and start a competing company in the same city.  But they want to take “their” clients with them. In a recent Pennsylvania case, the departing employees left a confederate inside the old employer. The inside man told the […]

3 Severance Agreement Time-bombs

By John Alan Doran Yesterday the SEC entered a cease and desist agreement with BlueLinx Holdings, fining the company $265,000.00 for including unlawful confidentiality and waiver provisions in its severance agreements.  BlueLinx used a variety of severance agreements or letters with its departing employees.  Most of these prohibited the employee from sharing the company’s confidential […]

5 Keys To Federal DTSA

By John Alan Doran Today, President Obama signed into law the Defend Trade Secrets Act (“DTSA”). The DTSA essentially federalizes trade secrets law by creating sweeping civil remedies and penalties for theft of trade secrets. Here are five key things you need to know about the law: (1) The DTSA creates federal court jurisdiction for […]

Arizona Trade Secrets Grow New Teeth

By John Doran   Over the last 18 months, the courts had diluted Arizona trade secret protections, notwithstanding the recent criminalization of trade secret theft by the AZ legislature. Today, however, the Arizona Supreme Court breathed new life into trade secret protection in Orca Communications Unlimited v. Noder, No. CV-13-0351 (Ariz. November 19, 2014).  Orca […]

Arizona Court Strikes Down Restrictive Covenants

By John Alan Doran In a notorious case, the Arizona Court of Appeals today struck down Quicken Loans’ non-solicitation covenants and confirmed that the defendants in the case were entitled to recover their attorneys’ fees. Quicken sued seven of its former employees for breaching their non-solicitation covenants when they joined a competitor, loanDepot.  The non-solicitation […]

Reminder–Trade Secrets Cases Can Cost BIG (Particularly When You Cheat)!

By John Alan Doran Employers often ignore, or horribly underestimate, the cost of making a mistake about trade secret appropriation/misappropriation, as well as restrictive covenants (such as no-competes, no-hires, no-solicits) and confidentiality agreements. A Minnesota Court of Appeals recently provided employers with a wakeup call in Seagate Technology, LLC v. Western Digital Corp. Seagate brought […]

Customer List Not Secret Enough

By Rose McCaffrey An employer was unable to protect the confidentiality of its customer list, because it failed to present any evidence that the list was worthy of trade secret protection. Calisi v. United Financial Services, Inc., No. CV 2010-000795 (Ariz. App. April 11, 2013). A customer list may qualify as a trade secret when […]