Michigan Uniform Trade Secrets Act

Last Modified: 
2011-08-06

CURRENT THROUGH 2011 P.A. 60 WITH A GAP OF P.A. 38

CHAPTER 445 TRADE AND COMMERCE
UNIFORM TRADE SECRETS ACT

MCLS § 445.1901-1910 (2011)

§ 445.1901. Short title.

Sec. 1. This act shall be known and may be cited as the "uniform trade secrets act".

§ 445.1902. Definitions.

Sec. 2. As used in this act:
(a) "Improper means" includes theft, bribery, misrepresentation, breach, or inducement of a breach of a duty to maintain secrecy or espionage through electronic or any other means.
(b) "Misappropriation" means either of the following:
(i) 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.
(ii) Disclosure or use of a trade secret of another without express or implied consent by a person who did 1 or more of the following:
(A)Used improper means to acquire knowledge of the trade secret.
(B)At the time of disclosure or use, knew or had reason to know that his or her knowledge of the trade secret was derived from or through a person who had utilized improper means to acquire it, acquired under circumstances giving rise to a duty to maintain its secrecy or limit its use, or derived from or through a person who owed a duty to the person to maintain its secrecy or limit its use.
(C)Before a material change of his or her position, knew or had reason to know that it was a trade secret and that knowledge of it had been acquired by accident or mistake.
(c) "Person" means an individual, corporation, partnership, association, governmental entity, or any other legal entity.
(d) "Trade secret" means information, including a formula, pattern, compilation, program, device, method, technique, or process, that is both of the following:
(i) Derives independent economic value, actual or potential, from not being generally known to, and not being readily ascertainable by proper means by, other persons who can obtain economic value from its disclosure or use.
(ii) Is the subject of efforts that are reasonable under the circumstances to maintain its secrecy.

§ 445.1903. Misappropriation; injunction.

Sec. 3. (1) Actual or threatened misappropriation may be enjoined. Upon application to the court of competent jurisdiction, an injunction shall be terminated when the trade secret has ceased to exist, but the injunction may be continued for an additional reasonable period of time in order to eliminate commercial advantage that otherwise would be derived from the misappropriation.
(2) If a court determines that it would be unreasonable to prohibit future use of a trade secret, an injunction may condition future use upon payment of a reasonable royalty for no longer than the period of time the use could have been prohibited.
(3) In appropriate circumstances, affirmative acts to protect a trade secret may be compelled by court order.

§ 445.1904. Misappropriation; recovery of damages.

Sec. 4. Except to the extent that a material and prejudicial change of position prior to acquiring knowledge or reason to know of misappropriation renders a monetary recovery inequitable, a complainant is entitled to recover damages for misappropriation. Damages can include both the actual loss caused by misappropriation and the unjust enrichment caused by misappropriation that is not taken into account in computing actual loss. In lieu of damages measured by any other methods, the damages caused by misappropriation may be measured by imposition of liability for a reasonable royalty for a misappropriator's unauthorized disclosure or use of a trade secret.

§ 445.1905. Award of attorney's fees.

Sec. 5. If a claim of misappropriation is made in bad faith, a motion to terminate an injunction is made or resisted in bad faith, or willful and malicious misappropriation exists, the court may award reasonable attorney's fees to the prevailing party.

§ 445.1906. Trade secret; preservation of secrecy.

Sec. 6. In an action under this act, a court shall preserve the secrecy of an alleged trade secret by reasonable means, which may include granting protective orders in connection with discovery proceedings, holding in camera hearings, sealing the records of the action, and ordering any person involved in the litigation not to disclose an alleged trade secret without prior court approval.

§ 445.1907. Statute of limitations; continuing misappropriation as single claim.

Sec. 7. An action for misappropriation must be brought within 3 years after the misappropriation is discovered or by the exercise of reasonable diligence should have been discovered. For the purposes of this section, a continuing misappropriation constitutes a single claim.

§ 445.1908. Other laws and remedies; effect.

Sec. 8. (1) Except as provided in subsection (2), this act displaces conflicting tort, restitutionary, and other law of this state providing civil remedies for misappropriation of a trade secret.
(2) This act does not affect any of the following:
(a) Contractual remedies, whether or not based upon misappropriation of a trade secret.
(b) Other civil remedies that are not based upon misappropriation of a trade secret.
(c) Criminal remedies, whether or not based upon misappropriation of a trade secret.

§ 445.1909. Applicability and construction of act.

Sec. 9. This act shall be applied and construed to effectuate its general purpose to make uniform the law with respect to the subject of this act among states enacting it.

§ 445.1910. Effective date.

Sec. 10. This act takes effect October 1, 1998 and does not apply to misappropriation occurring before the effective date. With respect to a continuing misappropriation that began before the effective date, this act does not apply to the continuing misappropriation that occurs after the effective date.