Trade Secrets

TRADE SECRETS

Your Intellectual Property is the foundation of your business. Protecting your trade secrets from corporate espionage, disloyal employees, or infringement is one of the most important steps you can take to protect your bottom line.

What is considered a trade secret in Michigan?

The Michigan Uniform Trade Secrets Act (MUTSA) defines a trade secret per Section 445.1902 as “a formula, pattern, compilation, program, device, method, technique, or process, that…both:

  (i) Derives independent economic value, actual or potential, from not being generally known to, and not being readily ascertainable by proper means by other persons who can obtain economic value from its disclosure or use.
  (ii) Is the subject of efforts that are reasonable under the circumstances to maintain its secrecy.”
Under Michigan State Law, a party that incurs damages as the result of misappropriation of a trade secret is entitled to compensation for those damages.

Trade secrets claims and actions have a statute of limitations.

Something you may not have known, however, is that under MUTSA, an action against the misappropriation of a trade secret must be brought within a certain time period. Generally speaking, the action is required to be brought within 3 years of discovering that the misappropriation has occurred. It’s also worth keeping in mind that under MUTSA, a continuing misappropriation constitutes a single claim.

To protect our clients’ trade secrets in matters involving employment, we offer services that include:

  • Patent, trademark, and copyright corporate ownership agreements
  • Agreements not to compete
  • Confidentiality and nondisclosure agreements
  • Dispute management involving technical employees

Our government contracts services include:

  • Negotiation of contracts related to government-supported research
  • Advice on compliance with government regulations related to government-supported research
  • Assistance with reporting requirements required in government contracts
  • Assistance with protection of clients Intellectual Property, related to government-supported research