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What is a Non-Disclosure Violation?
A non-disclosure violation occurs when one party discloses information or material without authorization or approval. These usually occur in connection with a non-disclosure agreement, also called a confidentiality agreement. Such agreements are intended to restrict and control the way the parties handle and release information that is classified, confidential, or private.
In most cases, non-disclosure violations are required by employers for certain workers who handle sensitive material. In the agreement, the employers lays out instructions regarding the sensitive material, such as:
- Which persons or parties (if any) can have access to the material
- Procedures for disclosing the information when needed
- Consequences of unauthorized disclosures
Non-disclosure agreements are typically included as clauses in an employment contract.
What Are Some Examples of Non-Disclosure Violations?
Some common examples of violations of a non-disclosure agreement may include:
- Telling friends or family members about the protected material
- Releasing company information to the press or to the consumer public
- Releasing photos, videos, or audio recordings of the sensitive material
- Informing competing businesses about the company plans
Violations may also include a breach of any of the various terms that are specifically placed in a disclosure agreement. These can often be very unique, and may be created for each individual worker or each product involved. Penalties for non-disclosure violations may include damages awards, termination from employment, and other consequences.
Am I Required to Sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement?
In most cases, non-disclosure agreements are purely private requirements that are constructed by the hiring party. In other words, most laws do not require people to sign non-disclosure agreements. However, the hiring of a candidate often involves the signing of such agreements, so a person might not get the job they are seeking if they refuse to sign such agreements.
For some types of employment, non-disclosure agreements are absolutely essential to the line of work. For instance, persons who work with trademarks, logos, and other designs are often required to sign non-disclosures regarding the intellectual property they work with.
Should I Obtain a Lawyer for Help with a Non-Disclosure Agreement?
Non-disclosure violations can often result in losses and other negative consequences. You may wish to hire a lawyer if you need help reviewing, contesting, or disputing a non-disclosure agreement. Your attorney can provide you with the legal advice that is needed for succeeding on your claim. Also, a qualified lawyer can help you with any legal questions or concerns that you might have regarding the agreement.
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Last Modified: 09-16-2013 12:42 PM PDT
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