Late yesterday, the House of Representatives joined the Senate in passing a sweeping new statute that creates a new federal civil cause of action for trade secret theft. The new statute, called the Defense of Trade Secrets Act (DTSA), can be found here and is expected to be signed into law by the President within the next few days.
Where will we first see the effects of the new federal trade secret law? Answer: in the hundreds (thousands?) of currently pending state court trade secret misappropriation cases. Soon after the DTSA becomes effective there will be a significant increase in federal district court decisions being relied upon in state courts to explain and construe existing state trade secret statutes.