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Virginia Uniform Trade Secrets Act Prohibits Improper Acquisition of Trade Secrets, Regardless of Subsequent Use

Misappropriation of trade secrets claims can sometimes be difficult to sustain. While evidence of the taking of a trade secret may be available, evidence of its subsequent use may not.

Virginia Supreme Court Reverses 22-Year-Old Precedent in Non-Compete Case

A recent decision by the Virginia Supreme Court makes clear that when it comes to the use and enforcement of noncompetition agreements under Virginia law, “one size” does not “fit all” and that employers must utilize narrowly tailored agreements that reflect a position-specific, functional analysis in order for such agreements to be deemed enforceable. In Home Paramount Pest Control Companies, Inc. v. Shaffer, No. 101837, 2011 Va. LEXIS 222 (2011), the Virginia Supreme Court upheld the trial court’s decision to strike down the noncompetition clause in an employment agreement that the company entered into with one of its employees, who in 2009, resigned his position and soon went to work for a competitor. Through this decision, the Supreme Court reversed its own, 22-year-old precedent, through which it had held that the precise language at issue within a noncompetition agreement was enforceable.
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