Procedure

What Did You Say Your Trade Secrets Were?

by Lee Gesmer on March 27, 2006

Trade Secrets, Procedure. Warning: if you’re seeking discovery in a trade secret case in the Suffolk Business Litigation Session make sure that you have (a) provided the court with a detailed description of your trade secrets, and (b) filed a protective order that strictly complies with the Uniform Rules of of Impoundment.

For a recent decision making these points, written by Judge Allan Van Gestel in the Suffolk Business Litigation Session, click [here]. The decision, Tourtellotte Solutions, Inc. v. Tradestone Software, Inc., was featured on the front page of Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly last October. In a nutshell, the plaintiff asked for expedited discovery (in other words, the right to take discovery on a schedule faster than allowed in the ordinary course by the rules of civil procedure), so that the plaintiff could obtain evidence necessary to bring a preliminary injunction against the defendant. The plaintiff’s basic claim was that the defendant had engaged in “software misappropriation,” a term that Judge Van Gestel stated “sounds very much like trade secret misappropriation.”

The judge denied the motion, stating: “a detailed description of what is claimed to be a trade secret must be provided and a protective order of some sort needs to be worked out.”

Neither conclusion is surprising in the least.… Read the full article

Electronic Discovery – The New New Thing

by Lee Gesmer on July 21, 2005

Procedure. There are fads in the law, just like everywhere else. Apologies to Michael Lewis, but there can be no doubt that, in the odd and insular world inhabited by litigators, electronic discovery is the new, new thing, and almost everyone is scrambling to catch up. It is what Y2K was from 1997 to January 1, 2000, but unlike Y2K, it’s not going away anytime soon.

It easy to tell what’s hot in litigation: just watch publications like the National Law Journal and the American Lawyer and look for frequent articles on the “hot topics.” Google “electronic discovery” and you get 354,000 hits.

I’ll be writing more about electronic evidence and discovery, but for now it’s worth noting that if you want to learn about this subject one resource stands tall: Kroll Ontrack.

Kroll makes an effort to track and digest every case involving electronic discovery and computer forensics (look here to see this lengthy document, which can be sorted by topic or jurisdiction).… Read the full article