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On May 11, 2017, the Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA) – the law that created a Federal cause of action for trade secret misappropriation – celebrated its first birthday. From the first year of enforcement, it appears that the DTSA got the balance right with some provisions, may need to be tweaked with others, and has yet to render clear results in some.
On May 22, 2017, in TC Heartland LLC v. Kraft Foods Group Brands LLC, the Supreme Court reversed decades of expansive patent venue interpretation by the Federal Circuit. The ruling in TC Heartland immediately overturns long-standing “forum-shopping” practices and introduces a longer-term issue of defining “a regular and established place of business.”
In Water Splash v. Menon, the Supreme Court presents guidance for multinational plaintiffs and defendants charting the rarely tested waters of international service. Specifically, in determining that service by direct mailing is not expressly prohibited under the Hague Service Convention, the Court opened the flood gates for parties to attempt Convention-compliant service by direct mailing.
With cannabis policy reform and legalization continuing to gain momentum nationwide and internationally, the “Green Rush” is well underway. For companies and entrepreneurs entering this industry, comprehensive intellectual property (“IP”) protection is vital for their developing cannabis brands and inventions.

This morning, in Matal v. Tam, previously Lee v. Tam, the Supreme Court handed down its most impactful interpretation of the disparagement clause of the Lanham Act to date by holding that at its intersection with the First Amendment, the disparagement clause violates the First Amendment’s Free Speech Clause.  

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