The article covers a decision by the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit overturning a lower court’s decision concerning allegations that the plaintiff’s former employee misappropriated a proprietary “tax arbitrage” strategy. The case is titled TLS Management and Marketing Services, LLC v. Rodríguez-Toledo, et al.
As described in the article, the First Circut found
that while client information may not have been available to the public, the plaintiff did not prove it had trade secrets.
“[A]ny trade secrets in the CPR were not identifiable because TLS did not ‘separate the [purported] trade secrets from the other information … known to the trade,’” Judge Timothy B. Dyk wrote for the panel, adding that the U.S. Possession Strategy consisted of public knowledge as well.
In the article, Russell Beck is quoted as follows:
Boston attorney Russell Beck said the decision is a big deal for lawyers like himself who handle trade secret and nondisclosure cases.
“Appellate decisions involving trade secrets or nondisclosure agreements are not a frequent occurrence,” Beck said. “And when the 1st Circuit speaks, we all take note.”
More specifically, Beck said the case shows that courts will not reflexively find misappropriation of trade secrets when employees walk out the door with company materials; that plaintiffs must identify trade secrets with specificity before moving forward with discovery; and that the 1st Circuit will take a skeptical view of broad nondisclosure agreements.
The article was written by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly reporter Eric T. Berkman.
For up-to-the-minute analysis of legal issues concerning noncompete agreements in Massachusetts and across the United States, read Russell Beck’s blog, Fair Competition Law.
eck Reed Riden LLP is among the leading authorities in trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition law, and our experience handling these matters is backed by our extensive employment law and business litigation experience. Our hand-picked team combines attorneys with complementary expertise and practical experience.
The Wall Street Journal featured Beck Reed Riden LLP’s noncompete agreement experience. In 2016, the White House issued a report entitled, “Non-Compete Agreements: Analysis of the Usage, Potential Issues, and State Responses,” relying in part on Beck Reed Riden LLP’s research and analysis, including its 50 State Noncompete Survey.
Russell Beck’s work in this area is well recognized, and includes:
- Over twenty five years of working on trade secret, noncompete, and unfair competition matters
- Assisting the Obama White House as part of a small working group to develop President Obama’s Noncompete Call to Action
- Authoring the book Negotiating, Drafting, and Enforcing Noncompetition Agreements and Related Restrictive Covenants (5th ed., MCLE, Inc. 2015), used by other lawyers to help them with their noncompete matters
- Authoring the book Trade Secrets Law for the Massachusetts Practitioner (1st ed. MCLE 2019), covering trade secrets nationally, with a focus on Massachusetts law
- Drafting and advising on legislation for the Massachusetts Legislature to define, codify, and improve noncompetition law
- Teaching Trade Secrets and Restrictive Covenants at Boston University School of Law
- Founding and administrating the award-winning blog, Fair Competition Law
- Establishing and administrating the Noncompete Lawyers and Trade Secret Protection groups on LinkedIn, with over 1,600 members around the world
- Founded and chaired the Trade Secret / Noncompete Practice for an AmLaw 100 firm
In addition, Russell was honored for his work in this area of law in the 2019 Chambers USA Guide, which stated that Russell Beck is a “terrific” attorney, who “is an excellent choice of counsel regarding noncompete agreements and the resolution of restrictive covenant disputes.” Chambers noted that Russell “basically wrote the new Massachusetts statute on noncompetes” and that “he’s an expert in employee mobility and nonrestrictive covenants.”
Beck Reed Riden LLP is Boston’s innovative litigation boutique. Our lawyers have years of experience working with clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to start-ups and individuals. We focus on business litigation and employment. We are experienced litigators and counselors, helping our clients as business partners to resolve issues and develop strategies that best meet our clients’ legal and business needs – before, during, and after litigation. We’re ready to roll up our sleeves and help you. Read more about us, the types of matters we handle, and what we can do for you here.