|“A trade secret may consist of any formula, pattern, device or compilation of information which is used in one's business, and which gives him an opportunity to obtain an advantage over competitors who do not know or use it…The subject matter of a trade secret must be secret…Substantially, a trade secret is known only in the particular business in which it is used.” Restatement of Torts|
One of the most common aspects of unfair competition results from the usurpation of trade secret information. Many courts reject the claim that information is a trade secret because the procedures and protocols in place for safeguarding that information do not adhere to the requirements under law. Lucas & Mercanti often assists clients in the effective creation and implementation of trade secret programs. Such counsel can have a profound impact on a company’s business practices. Generally, a claim may result against another for trade secret misappropriation for wrongfully obtaining and disseminating that information.
Intellectual property protection also extends to employment and consultant agreements. For example, since patents issue to inventors in the United States, companies need to specify in the employment agreement or the consultant agreement that ownership of any patents that are job-related rests or will rest with the employer.
Since a patent establishes a property right, the patent law provides for the transfer or sale of a patent or trademark, the licensing of a patent or trademark or of an application for a patent or trademark by a written instrument. Lucas & Mercanti has extensive experience in crafting such instruments.
Our firm is also experienced in helping to protect a company’s propriety information through the crafting of a non-disclosure agreement which is also referred to as a secrecy agreement or confidentiality agreement. Our lawyers will also update these agreements to reflect changing circumstance within the company.