News and Events for Attorneys and Executives

Turbulence on Breach of Employment Agreement, Trade Secret Misappropriation

By on February 23, 2019 in Contracts, Employment, Litigation-Business

Addressing a bench trial decision concerning a former employee’s retention of confidential information and violation of a non-compete provision, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit found no abandonment of the employer’s breach claims, and concluded that while certain flowcharts contained protectable trade secrets, there was no breach of the non-compete.

In an article for McDermott Will & Emery, posted at, Mary Hallerman describes the case of an employee who was subject to an employment agreement requiring him to return to his employer all work documents upon leaving the company. The former employee breached his agreement by retaining these documents after he left the company and misappropriated trade secrets, the plaintiff company alleged.

The Fourth Circuit found that the ex-employee had not breached the non-compete clause because his role at his new employer was not sufficiently similar to constitute a breach.

Read the article.





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