The Business, Entrepreneurship & Tax Law Review


Peter Menell


The Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016 ("DTSA") was the product of a multi-year effort to federalize trade secret protection. In the final stages of drafting the DTSA, Senators Grassley and Leahy introduced an important new element: immunity "for whistleblowers who share confidential information in the course of reporting suspected illegal activity to law enforecement or when filing a lawsuit, provided they do so under seal." The meaning and scope of this provision are of vital importance to enforcing health, safety, civil rights, financial market, consumer, and environmental protections and deterring fraud against the government, shareholders, and the public. This article explains how the whistleblower immunity provision was formulated and offers insights into its proper interpretation.

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