Orrick Lawyers Author Article on Defend Trade Secrets Act


Employment law partner Michael Weil and trade secrets associate Catherine Lui authored an article in Law360 discussing the Defend Trade Secrets Act. An excerpt from the article is included below.

State court or federal court? If the Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2014 (S. 2267, introduced on April 29, 2014) becomes law, then trade secrets plaintiffs — not just those who can maintain diversity jurisdiction — could proceed in federal court under new federal law. But would they want to? While the knee-jerk reaction of many litigants is a resounding “Yes!,” we wonder whether federal court under the DTSA would be preferable to the well-known Uniform Trade Secrets Act, which is available in 48 of the 50 states.

Let’s first look at where the DTSA and the UTSA appear the same or similar. Both statutes provide nearly identical definitions of trade secrets and misappropriation. Both also offer similar remedies for injunctive relief, actual damages, unjust enrichment, reasonable royalties, punitive damages, and attorneys’ fees.