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Trade secrets central topic of complex legal situation

On Behalf of | Dec 27, 2017 | Trade Secrets

In Missouri, Kansas and all other states, whistleblowers are protected by law from retaliation in the workplace when they report situations that are illegal or place others at risk. A former Uber transportation employee is a central figure in an ongoing legal battle that pertains to whistleblowing and trade secrets. Some say the man who used to work for Uber left the company as a whistleblower, stating he was not comfortable with its executive practices.

However, Uber sings a different tune when it comes to why the man no longer works for the company. Uber says the man had been given a demotion because he didn’t score well on a performance review. A company representative also said the man was caught downloading  documents with sensitive information and later using it for his own financial gain.

An attorney representing the former employee reportedly submitted a 37-page letter to Uber as part of a dispute, listing all the allegations made by the former worker against the company. That same letter is now a pertinent item of consideration in a separate lawsuit between Uber and a self-driving company known as Waymo. Waymo says that Uber took ownership of another company, Ott0, whose success was built on trade secret information that was stolen from Waymo by a former employee who then went to work for Otto. 

In the letter, the former Uber employee (on whose behalf the letter was filed) says Uber was well aware that the Otto employee had stolen trade secrets from Waymo and used the information to increase its own success. A pretrial hearing was recently held in regard to this complicated legal situation. There may be business owners in Missouri or Kansas facing similar problems who could benefit from consultation with experienced intellectual property law attorneys.

Source: wired.com, “New Evidence Could Blow Open the Uber/Waymo Self-Driving Lawsuit“, Aarian Marshall, Dec. 15, 2017

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