Trade Secret Litigation Services
Trade secrets are confidential information protected by intellectual property (IP) rights and is available for sale or licensing.
In general, information must contain the following elements to qualify as a trade secret:
- The trade secret must contain some information
- It must have some economic value derived from the fact that it is unknown to others and so cannot be used
- Reasonable efforts have been taken by the owner to keep the information secret, such as using confidentiality agreements with business partners and workers.
Unauthorized access, use, or disclosure of such secret information in a contradictory manner to fair business practices is considered an unfair practice and a violation of trade secret protection.
What does Trade Secret Protect?
In general, trade secrets may be used to protect any confidential business information that gives an enterprise a competitive edge and is unknown to others. Trade secrets include technical information, such as manufacturing processes, pharmaceutical testing data, computer program designs and drawings, and commercial information, such as distribution methods, supplier and client lists, and advertising strategies.
Additionally, trade secrets may be used to protect financial information, formulas and recipes, and source codes.
Importance of Trade Secret Protection
In contrast to Patents, trade secrets are safeguarded without registration, which means they are protected without any formalities. A trade secret is perpetually protected unless it is discovered or legally acquired by others and made public. For these reasons, trade secret protection may appear to be an especially appealing option for certain businesses. However, certain conditions must be met before the information is considered a trade secret. Compliance with such requirements may prove to be more challenging and costly than first appears.
What is Trade Secret Infringement?
Trade secret violation is referred to as "misappropriation." It happens when a person wrongly acquires a trade secret or incorrectly reveals or uses a trade secret without authorization or with cause to know that a mistake or an accident has gained information on the trade secret. Misappropriation should not be deliberate. It can be done inadvertently or negligently.
Acts amount to Misappropriation of Trade Secret or Trade Secret Litigation
The following actions constitute misappropriation of a trade secret and are expressly prohibited by law:
- the acquisition of a Trade Secret through Improper Means;
- the disclosure or use of a Trade Secret by a person who obtained knowledge of the Trade Secret through Improper Means;
- the acquisition, disclosure, or use of a Trade Secret by a person who knows, or should know, at the appropriate time that the knowledge of the Trade Secret was:
- Derived from or through a person who acquired it through Improper Means;
- Derived from or through a person who owed a duty to maintain its secrecy or limit its use; or
- Derived from or through a person who owed a duty to maintain its secrecy.
- the disclosure or use of a Trade Secret by a person who is aware, or should be aware, that it is a Trade Secret and that knowledge of it was acquired accidentally or by mistake.
Enforcement of Trade Secret Litigation
- Consult an IP attorney An IP Attorney or an IP law firm that may advise you on your legal choices and assist you in determining when, how, and what legal action to take against infringers, as well as how to resolve any such issue via litigation or other means. Ascertain that any such choice aligns with your business's broader strategy and goals.
- File Civil Proceedings: Where a Trade Secret owner chooses to bring legal action against the infringer, the courts usually offer various remedies to compensate aggrieved patent owners. The Court may award the following remedies in case of Copyright Infringement:
- Order to surrender infringing products to right holders.
- The infringer may be required to disclose the identities of other parties engaged in the creation and dissemination of the infringing content, as well as their distribution methods.
- The Court may order the destruction of infringing products without compensation upon request.
- File a complaint with the UAE Ministry of Economy The owner can still file an official complaint with the UAE Ministry of Economy, which will (if necessary) work with police to conduct a raid to investigate the alleged Infringement. It may result in the infringer being prosecuted criminally. Under the Penal Code, the infringer faces a minimum sentence of one year in prison and/or a minimum fine of AED 20,000.
Law Applicable to Trade Secret in the UAE
Trade secrets are protected explicitly under the UAE's Industrial Property Law (Law No. 31 of 2006), which also governs patents and industrial designs. Further, in DIFC, the Intellectual Property Law DIFC Law No. 4 of 2019 is the first legislation in the UAE to regulate trade secrets.
Why choose HHS Lawyers and Legal Consultant
HHS Lawyers & Legal Consultants consist of specialized IP professionals who can assist you in filing Trade Secret Litigation. Apart from this, HHS Lawyers and Legal Consultants also provide you with services relating to Trade Secret Litigation enforcement, such as:
- To perform periodic inspections as part of its vigilance against Trade Secret infringement,
- To seize and destroy all counterfeited copies with the help of the police force and
- To assist the client in filing a Trade Secret infringement complaint against the infringer.
If you need any legal assistance with your legal issues, please do not hesitate to contact us.