In Seyfarth’s second webinar in its series of 2017 Trade Secret Webinars, Seyfarth attorneys Scott Humphrey, Robyn Marsh, and Dawn Mertineit focused on trade secret and client relationship considerations in the banking and financial services industry, with a particular focus on a firm’s relationship with its FINRA members. The webinar included practical steps financial institutions can implement to protect trade secrets and client relationships; tips on what to do if your trade secrets are improperly removed or disclosed or if a former employee is violating his/her restrictive covenant agreements; how to prosecute a case against a former employee who is a FINRA member; and the impact of the Protocol for Broker Recruiting on trade secrets and client relationships.

As a conclusion to this well-received webinar, we compiled a summary of three takeaways that were discussed during the webinar:

  • Remember that you can seek court injunctive relief (Temporary Restraining Order and, possibly, Preliminary Injunction) before proceeding in FINRA.
  • The definition of a trade secret varies but company, but you must take adequate steps to protect them as a company, and the information cannot be publicly available or easily discovered, to merit enforcement under the law.
  • Employers can take steps at all stages to protect their confidential information–don’t forget to implement on-boarding and off-boarding procedures, as well as policies and procedures that will be in effect during an employee’s tenure, to protect your information before a problem arises.