07/29/2008

Trade Secret Protection | Former Employees Get Sued by Honeywell

Trade Secret Laws Blog: Honeywell Sues Akebono and Two Former Employees for Trade Secrets Theft

On July 24, 2008, Honeywell International sued Akebono Corporation, Akebono Brake Industry Co., Ltd. and Sunil Kesavan and Ximming Shao for misappropriating trade secrets that relate to the making of fiction materials for automotive brake pads.

Honeywell claims that a secret process one of its employees designed for the making of automotive brake pad materials has been maintained as a trade secret from 1996 until the present. Honeywell further claims that Kesavan and Shao, who left employment with Honeywell in 2002 and 1999 respectively, began work with Akebono and used information Honeywell maintained to research and develop, and ultimately received a US patent for, brake systems that utilize Honeywell's confidential and trade secret information.

Under trade secret protection law, Honeywell is now trying to get the genie back in the bottle. Their first two claims for relief are to have the Akebono patent declared the property of Honeywell and correct the "named inventor" for the patent to be exclusively their employee (see http://uspto.gov/web/offices/pac/mpep/documents/appxl_35_U_S_C_256.htm) and not Kesavan and Shao and, ultimately, Akebono.

The case is filed in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan and is case number 2:08-CV-13197.

Most employees fail to realize that trade secrets, ideas and inventions often belong to the employer. Non-compete agreements are often overlooked when seeking new employment. In Michigan, non-compete agreements are often enforceable for trade secret protection.

Technorati Tags: , , ,

COMMENTS

Employees need to be more cautious about starting a business which competes against a former employer. Even if there is no non-compete agreement, confidential information and trade secrets are still protected under Michigan law.

Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear on this weblog until the author has approved them.

If you have a TypeKey or TypePad account, please Sign In.

TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d834208fd253ef00e553c15e1e8833

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Trade Secret Protection | Former Employees Get Sued by Honeywell:

Official Trademark Clearinghouse Agent

Trade Secret Law & Non-Compete Law Blog Homepage: Trade Secret Attorney, Non-Compete Agreement Attorney

ARCHIVES

Domain attorney recommended by Domaining.com
© 2011 Traverse Legal, PLC. All Rights Reserved.
Traverse Legal on LinkedInTraverse Legal on FacebookTraverse Legal on Twitter
Events & Conferences:
  • International Trademark Association 2011, San Francisco, California
  • Cyber Law Summit 2011, Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Game Developers Conference 2011, San Francisco, California
  • DOMAINfest 2011, Santa Monica, California
Recent Attorney Speaking Engagements:
  • South By Southwest 2010 SXSW Interactive Conference, Austin, Texas
  • West LegalEdcenter Midwestern Law Firm Management, Chicago, Illinois
  • Internet Advertising under Part 255, Altitude Design Summit, Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Online Defamation and Reputation Management, News Talk 650 AM, The Cory Kolt Show, Canada Public Radio Saskatewan Canada
  • Alternative Fee Structures, Center for Competitive Management, Jersey City, New Jersey
  • FTC Part 255 Advertising Requirements, Mom 2.0 Conference, Houston, Texas
  • Webmaster Radio, Cybersquatting & Domain Monetization, Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Notable Complex Litigation Cases Handled By Our Lawyers:
  • Trademark Infringement, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Cybersquatting Law, Trademark Law and Dilution Detroit, Michigan
  • Internet Defamation & Online Libel Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Trade Secret Theft, Chicago, Illinois
  • Cybersquatting Law, Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act Miami, Florida
  • Cybersquatting Law, Anticybersquatting Consumer Protection Act Eastern Dist. of Virginia, Alexandria
  • Stolen Domain Name, Orlando, Florida
  • Commercial Litigation, Tampa, Florida
  • Copyright Infringement and Cybersquatting Law, Grand Rapids, Michigan
  • Mass Tort Litigation, Los Angeles, California
  • Stolen Domain Name, Detroit, Michigan
  • Adwords Keyword Trademark Infringement, Los Angeles, California
  • Trademark Infringement & Unfair Competition, Boston, Massachusetts
  • Non-Compete Agreement and Trade Secret Theft, Detroit, Michigan
  • Mass Tort, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Mass Tort, Tyler, Texas
  • Insurance Indemnity, New York
  • Copyright Infringement, Detroit, Michigan