What is a Trade Secret and how can you get Trade Secret Protection?
A Trade secret is any confidential business information which provides your company a competitive edge over the competition.
Trade Secrets can be formulas, processes, designs, compilations of information, etc. Trade Secrets differ from patents in that you never register or disclose the secret. And because you don’t register a Trade Secret, you have the ability to keep the invention out of the public domain forever, unlike patents that usually only last 20 years. The Coca-Cola formula is the most well-known example of a Trade Secret. Coca-Cola has gone through great lengths and spent millions on ensuring that the recipe remains a secret. This just goes to show you that sometimes a Trade Secret is the right way to protect something, but it may cost a lot to ensure it remains a secret.
Because you do not register Trade Secrets, many people make the incorrect assumption that what they have constitutes a Trade Secret. That may or may not be the case. Essentially every company has Trade Secrets (or what they believe and/or want to be Trade Secrets), whether or not they know it. But, if those secrets are not treated as Trade Secrets and they get out in the public domain, then your company could suffer serious losses.
Protect your companies trade secrets
Trade Secrets can be very beneficial to companies for certain items. However, there are certain steps you must take in order to protect your Trade Secret, otherwise if it is stolen, you may have no recourse. Companies can employ Non-Compete Agreements, Confidentiality Agreements, and Non-Disclosure Agreements to help protect their Trade Secret. But, other steps need to be taken as well in order to ensure that your product is actually a “Trade Secret” and not just a regular old product or process.
The dangerous part of a Trade Secret is that if a third party independently duplicates your product, they have the right to produce the product themselves at that point. This differs from patent protection where the patent holder is given the right to exclude others from making, using, distributing, or selling their invention. But, if a Trade Secret is acquired through illegal means (i.e., stolen), the Trade Secret owner can sue the other party.
Let us work with you in order to determine whether or not Trade Secret protection is the right path to take. If it is, we will work closely with you in order to establish protocols in order to ensure your secret is given Trade Secret status. We can also draft all of the necessary documents your company will need. If you already have items you think are Trade Secrets, let us determine if you are correct. After all, the worst thing would be to think your secret is a Trade Secret when, in actuality, it’s not at all.