Tag Archives: trade secrets

Do You Know The Muffin Man, Who Lives Under A Trade Secrets Injunction?

As The Legal Intelligencer reported, When a top-level executive suddenly quits to take a job at a competing firm, the courts have the power to block the start of the new employment if the evidence shows that such an injunction is needed to prevent a likely misappropriation of trade secrets, the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled. The ruling came in Bimbo Bakeries USA Inc. v. Botticella, in which the appellate court considered whether the manufacturer of Thomas' brand English muffins was entitled to an injunction that barred one of its top-level executives from taking a new job ... Continue Reading

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Iron Man’s Suit Isn’t Patented, It’s A Trade Secret (Seriously)

I haven't seen Iron Man 2, but Robert Farley and Davida H. Isaacs have, and they've written a great column about the legal issues at the heart of the story, The Stark Reality of Defense Contracting: Iron Man 2 is the most expensive movie ever made about an intellectual property dispute.... In the United States, inventors are supposed to profit from their creations, as emphasized in the original comics. But Iron Man 2 takes a different tack. While trying to fend off Vanko, Stark is pressured by the U.S. government to give up the secrets of the Iron Man suit. ... Continue Reading

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“Lost” iPhones and Goldman Sachs: Filtering Deception Through Middlemen

"Once the lawyers get involved..." There are a hundred ways to end that sentence. Once the lawyers get involved, everything falls apart. It takes ten times as long to finish a deal. A lawsuit is inevitable. The hysterics start. Few of the potential endings are favorable towards lawyers. Perhaps the most common sentiment is: once the lawyers get involved, the truth gets buried. To some extent, it's true. The first thing a criminal defense lawyer says to a new client? Remain silent. The first thing a litigator says to a new client? Let's get your story straight. The first thing ... Continue Reading

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Civil Remedies, The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, and Stolen Trade Secrets

At The National Law Journal, Nick Akerman, a partner at Dorsey & Whitney, has a thorough argument that the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act ("CFAA") should, and likely will, be applied against employees who leave with trade secrets or other proprietary / confidential information for use at their new jobs: The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, a federal criminal statute outlawing the theft of data, permits a company that "suffers damage or loss" by reason of a violation of the CFAA, to "maintain a civil action against the violator" for damages and injunctive relief. 18 U.S.C. 1030(g). Since [Pacific Aerospace & Electronics ... Continue Reading

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Uniform Trade Secrets Act Can Preempt Claims For Misappropriation, Breach of Fiduciary Duty / Duty of Loyalty, Unjust Enrichment and Unfair Competition

An interesting opinion out of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania in Youtie v. Macy's Retail Holding, 2009 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 47383 (June 5, 2009) by Senior Judge Thomas N. O'Neill, Jr.: On August 1, 2000, Macy's acquired all of the publicly-held shares of David's Bridal, Inc. David's Bridal is a corporation and a clothier specializing in bridal gowns and other formal wear and accessories. Plaintiff had purchased David's Bridal in 1972, expanded the operations, partnered with Steven Erlbaum beginning in 1989 or 1990 and with Erlbaum made a public offering of David's Bridal's stock in 1999. After Macy's acquired David's ... Continue Reading

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