Category: Intellectual Property Disputes

The Fifth Circuit Rules that Federal Law Preempts Unfair Competition Claim Under Texas Law

The Fifth Circuit recently considered whether the federal copyright and patent laws preempt (trump) Texas common law claim of unfair competition by misappropriation.

A Famous Dallas Chef Defeats an Injunction Based on “Unclean Hands” Defense, Can Now Use His Name

The unclean hands defense “allows a court to decline to grant equitable relief, such as an injunction, to a party whose conduct in connection with the same matter or transaction has been unconscientious, unjust, or marked by a want of good faith, or one who has violated the principles of equity and righteous dealing.”

When Stopping Competition with A Temporary Injunction, It Pays To Be Precise

A lot of times a company rushes to court asking the judge to stop a former employee or his new employer from using the company’s confidential information or soliciting its customers based on the agreements that the former employee had signed with the company.    

Employees’ Unauthorized Copying of Electronic Files is Not Theft in Texas

Before pleading a Texas Theft Liability Act claim against an employee for stealing the company’s data, information, documents, or other property, the company should make sure that there is at least some evidence of the employee’s intent to deprive the company of its property.

Protect Your Trade Secrets or Lose Them

At a bare minimum, all businesses should have a standard confidentiality (non-disclosure) agreement for its employees, vendors, investors, and anyone else who has access to the business’s trade secrets.

What Should a Company do When it Suspects That an Employee Stole Its Trade Secrets?

Employees take their employers’ trade secrets all the time. It’s a fact of life.  No matter what systems an employer has in place, sooner or later a key employee will depart and take some trade secret information, data, or documents with them. Most employees…

9 Basic Steps For Minizing Trade Secrets Theft From Your Company

Lawsuits involving trade secrets theft have become an almost weekly occurrence. In 2015, Fitbit, Nike, Angie’s List, and Oculus Rift became entangled in high-profile legal battles arising out of former employees and competitors allegedly stealing the companies’ trade secrets such as customer lists, software codes, and…

Two Common (and Costly) Mistakes in Trade Secrets Litigation

Trade secrets litigation can be expensive, and if you can avoid it by implementing the measures that I’ve previously described here, then you are off to a good start.  But if your trade secrets have been misappropriated and you have no choice but to…

How to Protect Your Intellectual Property When Getting Involved in a Startup

One of the factors that distinguishes successful startups from those that fail, is not just a great idea, but an idea that’s legally protected from theft. A source code that solves a major need in the market place is worthless unless the inventor can…

No Non-Compete Agreement? No Problem! – What Texas Companies Can Learn from Oculus Rift Lawsuits

I advise all my business clients in Texas to have non-compete and non-solicitation agreements with their key employees. Why? Well, first of all, because Texas courts enforce such agreements, so it only makes sense to take advantage of them. Second, because clear, specific, and…