Trade secrets are a form of intellectual property that provides a competitive advantage for a company. There is a set of criteria that must apply for a piece of information to be a trade secret. Trade secrets must be generally unknown, have economic value, and be under secrecy. Many different types of information are trade secrets, including devices, patterns, ideas, processes, or formulas. A key characteristic needed for a device or process to be a trade secret is secrecy. If the information can be easily found out or recreated by the public, it is not a trade secret.
It is crucial to begin protecting trade secrets as early as possible. At Kimball Anderson, our team of attorneys has a wealth of experience in trade secrets. We consult with our clients from the beginning so that their trade secrets will qualify for protection. Having a strategy in mind from the beginning helps our clients to maintain the secrecy of their information.
While trade secrets do not need to be registered to receive protection, it is necessary to protect the secrets correctly. Protection for trade secrets only exists for the length of time that the information stays secret. Once it becomes public knowledge, it no longer has protection. Our team of attorneys is skilled in secrecy consulting, providing clients with secrecy options ranging from non-disclosure agreements to confidentiality tactics.
Not only do we assist with setting up trade secret protection, but we also assist when litigation is required. Those who own trade secrets can collect damages or prevent further dispersal when someone without permission uses them. However, if someone discovers the process or idea on their own, there is no way to make them stop using the information. Our experienced attorneys are ready to assist in setting up trade secrets with the goal of avoiding litigation.