• Current through October 23, 2012

For the purposes of this chapter, the term:

(1) "Improper means" means theft, bribery, misrepresentation, breach or inducement of a breach of a duty to maintain secrecy, or espionage through electronic or other means.

(2) "Misappropriation" means:

(A) Acquisition of a trade secret of another by a person who knows or has reason to know that the trade secret was acquired by improper means; or

(B) Disclosure or use of a trade secret of another without express or implied consent by a person who:

(i) Used improper means to acquire knowledge of the trade secret; or

(ii) At the time of disclosure or use, knew or had reason to know that the trade secret was:

(I) Derived from or through a person who had utilized improper means to acquire it;

(II) Acquired under circumstances giving rise to a duty to maintain its secrecy or limit its use;

(III) Derived from or through a person who owed a duty to the person seeking relief to maintain its secrecy or limit its use; or

(iii) Before a material change in his or her position, knew or had reason to know that the information was a trade secret and knowledge of the trade secret had been acquired by accident or mistake.

(3) "Person" means a natural person, corporation, estate, trust, partnership, association, joint venture, government, governmental subdivision or agency, or any other legal or commercial entity.

(4) "Trade secret" means information, including a formula, pattern, compilation, program, device, method, technique, or process, that:

(A) Derives actual or potential independent economic value, from not being generally known to, and not being readily ascertainable by, proper means by another who can obtain economic value from its disclosure or use; and

(B) Is the subject of reasonable efforts to maintain its secrecy.

(Mar. 16, 1989, D.C. Law 7-216, § 2, 36 DCR 519.)


Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 48-501.

Legislative History of Laws

Law 7-216, the "Uniform Trade Secrets Act of 1988," was introduced in Council and assigned Bill No. 7-426, which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary. The Bill was adopted on first and second readings on November 29, 1988 and December 13, 1988, respectively. Signed by the Mayor on January 6, 1989, it was assigned Act No. 7-291 and transmitted to both Houses of Congress for its review.

Uniform Law

This section is based upon § 1 of the Uniform Trade Secrets Act. See 14 Uniform Laws Annotated, Master Edition, or ULA Database on WESTLAW.