Like beauty, victory can be in the eye of the beholder.  A plaintiff who establishes all of the necessary elements of a theft of trade secrets will typically be entitled to an injunction prohibiting the defendant from using the trade secrets.  However, this is not guaranteed.  If the court determines that “exceptional circumstances” exist, the court may permit the defendant to continue use of the misappropriated trade secrets provided that the defendant pays a reasonable royalty to the plaintiff.  When this occurs, the plaintiff may view the court’s judgment as an imperfect victory because the plaintiff has not regained its prior monopoly on use of the trade secrets.

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