On April 4, 2016, the Senate Judiciary Committee passed S. 1890, the Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016 (“DTSA”). Soon after, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) released a statement in which he applauded the Senate’s passage of the bill, noting that “trade secrets are an increasingly important form of intellectual property that have become more vulnerable to theft as a result of our globalized economy.” The Chairman also indicated his enthusiasm in “moving legislation to protect American trade secrets through the House Judiciary Committee in the coming weeks.”
Goodlatte was sure true to his word, as the House Committee approved S. 1890 by voice vote today. Companion legislation was introduced as well by Representative Doug Collins (R-GA). Supporters of the passage included Goodlatte, Collins, as well as Ranking Member John Conyers (D-MI), Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet Subcommittee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA), Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet Subcommittee Ranking Member Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), and Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY). The supporters emphasized the importance of trade secrets as a form of intellectual property vulnerable to theft as a result of our ever-increasing globalized economy. The supporters characterized S. 1890 as giving “American innovators a powerful new tool which will help them compete in an ever-evolving global market.” The bill will now likely go to the House for a vote.