Texas Fashionably Late to the Uniform Trade Secrets Act Party

By Vincent J. Allen

Significant changes in the law in Texas with respect to trade secrets went into effect September 1, 2013, with Texas becoming the 48th state to adopt the Uniform Trade Secrets Act.  Previously, there was no central repository for Texas trade secret law, as it was a combination of the common law, restatements, and the Texas Theft Liability Act.

The Act changes Texas trade secret law in a number of material respects and applies to any alleged misappropriation occurring on or after the effective date.  The extent of the changes will be determined by the courts as they interpret the Act but the Act is believed by many to eliminate a number of ambiguities that existed in the prior trade secret laws of Texas.  The changes will make trade secret protection broader in some circumstances and narrower in others, but will likely give more clarity to what is and is not considered a trade secret in Texas.

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