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Tampa Business Litigation Blog

2 parties engage in partnership disputes over park project

When two or more entrepreneurs in Florida or elsewhere decide to undertake a major development project, they may choose to share responsibilities by forming a partnership. When the stakes are high, any form of tension between business partners could increase the risks of partnership disputes, and these matters can be highly contestable. Disagreements surrounding a project to build an entertainment park have caused a rift between two business partners in another state.

The dispute reportedly pertains to the development of a nearly $2 billion entertainment park. Although the two parties initially entered an arrangement to work together on the project, recent reports indicate that they have chosen to part ways. In addition to choosing to end the arrangement, both sides continue to disagree over who retains the rights to move forward with operations.

Protecting company trade secrets as a new business owner

With high levels of competition in a variety of fields of operation, many businesses in Florida are constantly looking for ways to keep up with or gain an edge over rival companies. When it comes to the pursuit of success, many business owners consider it essential to take steps to protect sensitive company information. However, for those who are just starting out in the business world, knowing how to protect company trade secrets can be a challenging task.

When it comes to protecting sensitive company secrets, the first step is to identify all the information one deems it necessary to protect. This can include anything from the development of product parts to methods of operation at the business. Once the information is identified, an owner may find it helpful to label the necessary documents and find a safe place to store them.

Lehman's files breach of contract lawsuit over project delays

When two or more parties in Florida or elsewhere attempt to reach an agreement on a remodeling project, they may wish to discuss deadlines for its projected completion date. However, should unexpected factors cause delays, additional work may be necessary, and a company will likely expect to receive payment for all work performed. An air conditioner contractor has filed a breach of contract lawsuit against a county in another state after claiming it is owed more than $450,000.

According to reports, the incident stems from an arrangement in which the county hired Lehman's to install new air conditioning and heating units in a local courthouse. However, the company asserts that the completion time of the project was delayed by several months after officials discovered the presence of asbestos within the building. Lehman's claims that the county agreed to pay for any additional costs associated with the delay but states that it has failed to uphold the terms of the arrangement.

My business doesn't have trade secrets. Does it?

Terms such as intellectual property and trade secrets tend to bring up images of large corporations who need to circle the wagons around their operations in order to keep their proprietary information safe. Those businesses tend to allocate a certain percentage of their budgets to making sure that they retain the rights to their information, processes and products.

When it comes to small business owners, whether here in Florida or elsewhere, they tend not to think they even have intellectual property, let alone trade secrets. The problem with that line of thought is that it is most likely wrong. Just about every business has some sort of trade secret or other intellectual property worth protecting.

Bass Pro accuses former employees of theft of trade secrets

Many individuals have used the experience they gain while working at a company to advance their careers and open doors to future opportunities. However, should a company in Florida believe that a person takes and continues to use sensitive information in their endeavors, it may wish to take steps to protect its business interests. Bass Pro has filed a theft of trade secrets lawsuit against two startup companies recently founded by former Cabela's employees.

According to the lawsuit, both companies were recently formed by employees who formerly worked as managers and directors at Cabela's, which is owned by Bass Pro. The company claims that these employees took sensitive company information with them upon leaving and used this information to form their startups. Bass Pro also asserts that the employees have violated the noncompete agreements they signed, preventing them from working with competitors for a set period.

Age discrimination lawsuit filed against IBM

When it comes to advancing one's career in the field of technology, having the necessary skill and experience can be essential. Unfortunately, individuals in Florida may find that these qualifications might not always be enough, as other factors could play a part in the process. IBM is reportedly facing a discrimination lawsuit after allegations surfaced claiming the company subjected a multitude of employees to unjust treatment based on their age.

Recent reports indicate that IBM has released as many as 20,000 employees over the age of 40 over the past six years. According to the lawsuit, the company subjected many of these employees to unfair conditions and failed to provide them with information about age bias. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of three individuals, each of whom are reportedly over the age of 55, after they were allegedly laid off for unlawful reasons.

Xavien accused Boeing of theft of trade secrets

Upon entering a business arrangement with another entity, companies in Florida and elsewhere may allow their new partners access to sensitive information. Should the arrangement come to an end, a company may wish to ensure its trade secrets are protected from unwarranted use. Xavien Holdings and Insurance has filed a lawsuit against Boeing accusing the aircraft developer of theft of trade secrets.

According to reports, the import and export bank Xavien claims the incident began when it invested a substantial sum of money into developing an insurance-based guarantee for commercial aircraft financing. Soon thereafter, the company entered into a business arrangement with Boeing, and asserts that aircraft maker agreed to sign a proprietary trade secrets agreement in the process. However, once the arrangement came to a close, Xavien asserts that Boeing continued to use sensitive information without approval.

Former CEO accuses Barnes and Noble of breach of contract

When a company in Florida begins to experience financial struggles, its owners may wish to identify the source of the problem and make budget cuts where necessary. Unfortunately in some cases, these cuts may lead to employee layoffs, and those who lose their jobs under similar circumstances may wish to take steps to ensure they were treated fairly in the process. After his sudden termination, the former CEO of Barnes and Noble has filed a lawsuit accusing the company of breach of contract and defamation.

The man claims he was fired from the company after a deal to sell of its assets to another entity fell through. He asserts that once Barnes and Noble was unable to complete the sale, company executives formed a plan to remove him from his position by conjuring allegations of misconduct. He says executives falsely accused him of bullying employees and subjecting an assistant to inappropriate behavior.

Former employee accused of violating noncompete agreement

For companies in Florida who operate in the food and beverage industry, protecting product recipes is imperative. Should an employee who had access to these recipes leave to work for a competitor, the company may wish to take steps to ensure its secrets are protected in the process. A brewery in another state has filed a lawsuit against a former employee, claiming that he violated his noncompete agreement upon accepting a position with a rival business.

Toppling Goliath Brewing Company asserts that the man previously held a position as the head brewer at the company. Upon being hired, Goliath claims the man signed a contract, stating that he would not accept a position with a rival company within a set distance for up to two years should he ever decide to resign. However, the company asserts that he violated this agreement when he was hired at Thew Brewery.

Employees pose a major threat to trade secrets

Trade secrets and other intellectual property play major roles in how many businesses operate. It is often imperative that companies have unique ways of providing services or manufacturing products that helps them remain competitive in the industry. As a business owner yourself, you certainly understand the importance of staying on top in your field of business.

Of course, as a business owner, you also know that trade secrets are often under the threat of potential theft. If a competing company gets ahold of important information relating to your business operations, your company could easily face detrimental impacts. While you may have taken steps to protect your intellectual property, your employees may pose the biggest threat to your success.

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