Trade Secret Litigation and Dispute Counseling

Why Cooley

Cooley understands how trade secrets and confidential information are essential to our clients’ success. Drawing on decades of work helping technology companies develop, define, protect and defend their technology and trade secrets, our lawyers adeptly assess risks, counsel clients and use the courts to pursue and defend civil claims related to trade secret misappropriation, breaches of fiduciary duty and related matters. They are experienced counselors helping clients create and implement intellectual property programs to protect their valuable assets and battle-tested trial lawyers skilled in obtaining and defending temporary restraining orders, ex parte seizure orders and injunctions regarding misappropriated trade secrets and corporate opportunities.

Our experience also includes counseling and defending against trade secret theft claims (and related claims including claims for breach of noncompetition agreements) arising from the hiring of employees from competitors. We regularly conduct internal investigations for clients in response to misappropriation allegations, navigating complex issues of employment and technology. We have a deep understanding of the business issues that frequently drive these disputes as well as the nuances behind them, and we pride ourselves on our ability to craft creative legal and business strategies to resolve these matters to our clients’ advantage.

Areas of Practice

Strategic Counseling

  • Develop strategic patent and trade secret protection programs designed to protect and enhance our clients' market share
  • Advise on the development and implementation of employee onboarding and departure processes to avoid trade secret claims or potential loss of proprietary information
  • Prepare confidentiality, nondisclosure, non-compete and non-solicitation agreements, as well as employment and independent contractor agreements
  • Create and implement intellectual property and trade secret programs, methods and procedures to protect intangible assets
  • Perform due diligence reviews in connection with mergers, acquisitions and expansion of operations, including risk-analysis diligence on deals implicating proprietary rights and trade secret claims
  • Conduct internal investigations for clients in response to trade secret misappropriation and whistleblower allegations
  • Coordinate with our privacy and data protection lawyers to develop, update and audit security plans and policies


  • Pursue and defend civil claims related to trade secret misappropriation, breaches of fiduciary duty, breaches of non-competition agreements and related matters
  • Obtain and defend temporary restraining orders, ex parte seizure orders and other injunctions covering the use of misappropriated trade secrets and corporate opportunities
  • Work with law enforcement in criminal trade secret matters

Representative Matters

  • Defended Bumble in a trade secret, trademark, patent litigation and unfair competition case in the Western District of Texas.
  • Won a complete summary judgment victory for Directed, a manufacturer of aftermarket vehicle electronics, in a high-stakes, cross-border case brought by its primary competitor, Automotive Data Solutions, which sought tens of millions of dollars in damages for alleged trade secret misappropriation, copyright infringement and patent infringement.
  • Obtained a complete victory for Emerald Textiles and Jaye Park in a 4-week jury trial in San Diego Superior Court for claims alleging trade secret misappropriation.
  • Secured a favorable settlement for Garmin International in an action alleging misappropriation of trade secrets relating to a competitor's business plan and aircraft integrated cockpit system.
  • Obtained a $20 million jury verdict on behalf of our client Ichor Medical Systems, including compensatory damages, attorneys' fees and interest, as well as an equitable assignment of patents and patent rights filed based on the stolen trade secrets.
  • Secured a favorable settlement for InfoTrust Group (now doing business as Flatirons Solutions) in a lawsuit alleging trade secret misappropriation, unfair competition and interference with contractual relations and prospective economic advantage.
  • Won a jury verdict for Lawrence United Corporation against former employees and their new employer for unauthorized use and disclosure of proprietary customer lists and business sales information.
  • Achieved complete victory for NVIDIA in a Canada-based bench trial, defeating claims of trade secret misappropriation and interference with noncompetition agreements and related claims.
  • Serving as lead counsel for Oculus VR, a subsidiary of Facebook, in high-profile cases alleging misappropriation of trade secrets relating to the company's virtual reality headset technology.
  • Achieved significant victories for PureStorageSimpliVity Corporation and Solera Networks in trade secrets and noncompetition covenant cases alleging that departing employees stole trade secrets and confidential information.
  • Representing Quadro Partners, a leading technology-based real estate company, seeking to enjoin its former Head of Product from starting a competing company and misappropriating trade secrets.
  • Secured a favorable settlement for Reliant Technologies and one of its employees in claims alleging trade secret misappropriation.
  • Represented plaintiff SimpliVity in trade secret case, secured an injunction and protected company’s confidential information from competitor.
  • Obtained a preliminary injunction on behalf of StorageNetworks in a theft of trade secrets/non-compete litigation. The case subsequently settled with the entry of a consent judgment and permanent injunction against one of the former employees, who resigned from the plaintiff during the litigation.
  • Represented Tampa Bay Fisheries, part of the largest private label fish processor in the United States, in a trade secret misappropriation case brought by a prime competitor in District of Massachusetts. Cooley joined the case after the court had issued a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction against Tampa Bay, and has since had those orders dissolved in the client’s favor.