It has been almost a year since the Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016 (DTSA) took effect. Since Forbes Magazine called the DTSA the “Biggest IP Development in Years,” we thought it might be helpful to take a look at how often litigants have chosen to use the DTSA in federal cases this past year.
Let’s turn to the numbers. Looking at dockets for the First and Second Circuits, since May 2016, we located only 31 complaints that included a claim under the DTSA. The vast majority of these cases were filed in the Southern District of New York (16), followed by the Eastern District of New York (6), the District of Connecticut (5), the District of Massachusetts(3), and only one case filed in the Western District of New York.
Approximately 20 of those cases remain pending, meaning a relatively small number of cases are proceeding to the close of discovery and trial as the first year of the DTSA draws to a close. These are the cases we will be monitoring to see whether, in fact, the DTSA is having a big impact on how litigants protect their trade secret data.