WHIC LLC v. NextGen Laboratories

Civ. No. 18-00261 JMS-RLP
September 17, 2018
Federal Court
United States District Court for the District of Hawaii

In a recent decision, the United States District Court for the District of Hawaii granted Aloha Toxicology's motion for a preliminary injunction against defendant, NextGen Laboratories, Inc. Aloha Toxicology's allegations included, possessing, using, or disclosing Aloha Toxicology's "confidential/proprietary/trade secret information," and unfairly competing with Aloha Toxicology. Id. at *2.

Aloha Toxicology contracted with Summit Diagnostics, which hired a Sales and Operations Manager, Maki, for the purpose of increasing Aloha Toxicology's sales. Upon resigning from Aloha Toxicology and accepting a position with NextGen Laboratories, Inc., Maki contacted her former clients to encourage them to leave Aloha Toxicology, and become clients of NextGen Laboratories.

In balancing the Winter factors, the Court stated that it was a "close call" whether there was a "serious question going to the merits of the case." Because Maki "possessed such confidential information, which was developed over years with the company," and the other three Winter factors weighed strongly in Aloha Toxicology's favor, the Court held that a preliminary injunction was appropriate.

This decision highlights the delicate balancing test courts engage in when determining whether to grant a preliminary injunction. Please see the full decision below for more details.

LLC doing business as Aloha Toxicology, WIHC
Inc.; Ohana Genetics, Inc.; Stephanie Simbulan, NextGen Laboratories
Uniform Trade Secrets Act