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How Can I Prove the Information Was a Trade Secret? 

The Parzivand Law Firm, PLLC Sept. 21, 2022

Trade secrets consist of all methods, patterns, and techniques used in the day-to-day operations of a business that must be kept confidential. Also, trade secrets provide commercial value to the company and give them a competitive edge over other businesses. However, disputes may arise when a trade secret is misappropriated – used without the owner's consent or gotten through improper means.  

If you believe that your trade secrets have been misappropriated and want to understand your rights and options, consulting with a strategic Texas trade secret misappropriation attorney is imperative for clear direction. The Parzivand Law Firm, PLLC, enjoys providing experienced legal services and helping clients navigate complex intellectual property lawsuits involving trade secrets.  

Additionally, an attorney at The Parzivand Law Firm, PLLC, will assess your specific situation and help prove that the information was a trade secret and has been misappropriated. Also, they will examine your available legal options to seek deserved compensation and represent you diligently in every phase of the legal process. The firm proudly serves clients across Stafford, Sugar Land, and Fort Bend County, Texas. 

What Qualifies as a Trade Secret? 

According to the Texas Uniform Trade Secrets Act (TUTSA), a "trade secret" is any information that provides independent economic value from not being generally known and for which the owner makes reasonable efforts to maintain its secrecy. Examples of information that may be considered a trade secret include: 

  • Formula 

  • Method 

  • Pattern 

  • Technique 

  • Design 

  • Plan 

  • Compilation 

  • Code 

  • Financial data 

  • Program 

  • Device 

  • Procedure 

  • Prototype 

  • Process 

  • List of actual or potential suppliers or customers. 

Examples of Trade Secrets 

Some common examples of trade secrets include: 

  • McDonald's Special Sauce (Big Mac Sauce) 

  • The Google search algorithm 

  • Lena Blackburn's Baseball Rubbing Mud 

  • WD-40 

  • Listerine  

  • The secret recipe for Twinkies 

  • The secret ingredients for Kentucky Fried Chicken 

  • New York Times Bestseller list 

However, if another business, company, or competitor obtains or uses your trade secret through improper means or without consent, you may have a trade secret misappropriation claim against the business. 

What Is Considered A Trade Secret Misappropriation? 

Under Texas law – Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code Section 134A.002 (3) – trade secret misappropriation involves the acquisition of another party's trade secret by someone who knows or has reason to know that the trade secret was acquired through improper means. 

Furthermore, trade secret misappropriation occurs when another party's trade secret is disclosed or used without express or implied consent by someone who acquired the knowledge of the trade secret through improper means. 

Elements of a Trade Secret Claim 

In other to establish a trade secret misappropriation claim, the claimant must prove the following elements: 

  • The claimant has some valuable business information that was kept secret. 

  • The information isn't readily ascertainable or generally known. 

  • The claimant made reasonable efforts to maintain its secrecy. 

  • The defendant acquired the trade secret through improper means. 

  • The defendant has used that trade secret. 

  • The claimant suffered damages due to the defendant's misappropriation. 

A practiced attorney can advise you through every legal step involved in filing and establishing a trade secret misappropriation claim and help you navigate essential decisions. 

Next Steps to Take 

If you believe your trade secret has been misappropriated, you need to reach out to a skilled commercial litigation lawyer. Your attorney can help file your trade secret misappropriation claim, take proactive measures to protect the trade secret and prevent its continued use, and help pursue any available damages. Here are some possible remedies for trade secret misappropriation claims in Texas:  

Injunctive Relief – This is a court injunction that orders the offender to preserve the secrecy of the claimant's business information (trade secret) and stop violating their legal rights.  

Monetary Damages – The court will ask the defendant to pay monetary damages to you. This will help cover any economic harm you or your business might have suffered as a result of the trade secret misappropriation.  

Attorney's Fees – However, if the defendant was determined to have acted maliciously or willfully, the court may award attorneys' fees.  

A competent attorney has the legal advice and assistance you need to enforce your rights after the misappropriation of your trade secrets and help pursue injunctive relief and other potential damages you deserve. 

How a Trade Secret Attorney Can Help 

Dealing with intellectual property issues involving trade secrets can be quite complex. If you believe that your trade secrets have been used or obtained through improper means and want to file a trade secret misappropriation lawsuit, getting experienced guidance and representation is crucial. A reliable commercial litigation attorney can investigate your possible legal options and help prove that the misappropriated information was, in fact, a trade secret.  

The attorney at The Parzivand Law Firm, PLLC, has the diligence, resources, and expertise to advise and represent clients in their trade secret litigation. As your legal team, they can review all of the details of your case comprehensively and determine the appropriate legal strategy for your unique situation.  

Contact The Parzivand Law Firm, PLLC, today to schedule a simple case assessment with a loyal trade secret misappropriation lawyer. They possess the steadfast legal guidance, advocacy, and comprehensive representation you need in your trade secret litigation. The firm is proud to serve clients throughout Stafford, Sugar Land, and Fort Bend County, Texas.