Thoughts on Non-Compete and Trade Secrets in Georgia

Posted by Benjamin I. Fink on

This morning, I spoke and presented at the Institute of Continuing Legal Education’s Georgia Non-Compete/Trade Secret Seminar at State Bar of Georgia. Below are my top seven observations of non-compete and trade secrets activity in Georgia:
  1. There is still no substantive guidance from the appellate courts in Georgia on the non-compete statute passed in 2011.
  2. There are gaps in who is covered by the statute that are fraught with peril for the unwary.
  3. A constitutional challenge to the statute is possible.
  4. Whether the Georgia courts can blue pencil or judicially modify over broad non-competes remains an open issue.
  5. Only actual lists of customers are protected under Georgia’s trade secrets statute, not the identity of customers.
  6. An agreement is necessary to protect confidential information that does not rise to the level of a trade secret.
  7. Under the new statute in Georgia, confidential information can be protected as long as the information remains confidential.