On April 19, a divided Texas appellate panel reversed a jury’s $4.5 million award of exemplary damages, finding no evidence of malice in a hydraulic fracturing trade secret misappropriation case. Shale Exploration, an independent Oil and Gas Exploration company, accused Eagle Oil & Gas of breaching a confidentiality agreement and engaging in theft of trade secrets (Shale’s identification and compilation of mineral interest owners). View Full Post
DRL Enters., Inc. v. North Atlantic Op. Co., Inc., No. 16 C 8384, Slip Op. (N.D. Ill. Mar. 12, 2018) (Castillo, C.J.). Judge Castillo denied plaintiff DRL’s motion for summary judgment that defendants lacked standing to seek cancellation of DRL’s trademark registrations in this appeal of the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (“TTAB”) cancellation decision regarding DRL’s 1.0, 1.25 and 1.5 marks for use with tobacco rolling papers. View Full Post
As we have previously reported, the subject of loot boxes has received increasing scrutiny around the world. In one of the most recent pronouncements, the Dutch Gambling Authority declared the loot box mechanics used in a number of games to be illegal gambling and warned that it will begin enforcement actions as of June 20, 2018. View Full Post
In Krawiec v. Manly, owners of a ballroom dance studio sued two former employees pursuant to a non-compete clause in their employment contracts. The plaintiffs claimed their former employees began working at a competing dance studio where they shared “original ideas and concepts for dance productions, marketing strategies and tactics, as well as student, client and customer lists and their contact information.” However, the studio’s claim under North Carolina’s Trade Secrets Protection Act was dismissed by the North Carolina Business Court based on the pleadings, which did not specifically state each of the required components of a trade secrets claim. View Full Post
On April 24, 2018, the Supreme Court issued its decision in SAS Institute, Inc. v. ComplementSoft, LLC, holding that if the Patent Office institutes an inter partes review (IPR) proceeding, it must issue a final written decision with respect to the patentability of every patent claim challenged by the petitioner. View Full Post
On April 12, 2018, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the 2019 budget for the State of New York (the “Budget”) which dramatically changed the landscape of obligations which New York employers are to their employees.  Beyond allocating financial resources, the Budget includes a new change to New York law requiring New York employers to conduct annual sexual harassment training for all employees in accordance with state standards.  View Full Post
Seyfarth Shaw Attorneys Contribute to ABA’s Annual Trade Secret Law Report Seyfarth attorneys Robert Milligan, Joshua Salinas, Amy Abeloff, and Olivia Wada contributed to this year’s ABA Section of Intellectual Property Law, Trade Secrets and Interferences with Contracts Committee Annual Trade Secret Law Report. The Annual Report, found here, covers the significant trade secrets cases from around the country that were decided in 2017. View Full Post