Trade Secrets, Intellectual Property & Unfair Competition Protection.
A business’s most
valuable assets, after its people, are usually its trade secrets, inventions,
confidential information, written works, and above all, its customer/client
goodwill. The first line of defense against misappropriation of these assets
and unfair competition against your organization is a well-thought, properly
structured and legally enforceable Trade Secret, Confidential Information, Invention
Assignment and Non-Compete Agreement.
There is no such thing as a good quality form agreement that a business can use to protect these most valuable business assets. These agreements are governed almost exclusively by state law, and that law varies from one state to another. There are numerous compliance-related considerations that must be included in (or excluded from) these protective agreements. A misstep in drafting can lead to an unwelcome encounter with state or federal agencies, including the Securities Exchange Commission and the Federal Trade Commission, to name a couple.
Non-Compete Agreements particularly are subject to nuances of state law. Over the past few years, many states have enacted legislation to limit the use enforceability of such agreements, and they are outright illegal and unenforceable in three of them. Well-considered and properly drafted and implemented noncompete provisions can in should be included in employee and other service provider agreements to protect against unfair competition. The distinction between a legitimate and enforceable agreement and a non-compliant or unenforceable agreement often is nuanced, but critical. Non-compete agreements must be drafted such that they go no further than necessary to protect the Company’s legitimate business interests for a reasonable period of time. “Form” agreements rarely meet that standard.
Avisen Legal, P.A., is a boutique business law firm comprised of a team of veteran business attorneys who averaging over 20 years of experience practicing law in private law firm, in-house legal departments and government agencies. In each of these rules, our attorneys have encountered countless situations requiring the application of some solution for the protection of a business’s trade secrets, intellectual property, inventions and goodwill.
Asset Protection Team
has worked extensively in this area on behalf of for-profit, non-profit
businesses and executives in drafting, negotiating, and litigating disputes
over executive employment agreements, bonus and commission plans, and trade
secret, confidential information, non-compete and non-solicitation agreements.
brings his years of experience as an in-house attorney to counseling clients on
the drafting and negotiation of agreements, policies and procedures necessary
for the protection of trade secrets, inventions, and other forms of valuable
Taylor serves as outside general counsel for a wide range of organizations,
large and small, providing advice and counsel on strategies and tactics to
protect trade secrets and confidential business information.
Kim Lowe guides entrepreneurs, executive management teams, boards of directors, multigenerational families, shareholders and investors through all aspects of the business life cycle from formation to operation to exit.