South Carolina Non-Disclosure Agreement
Download the South Carolina Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA), a legal document used for preventing confidential information that is shared with an outside person or company from getting into the hands of third (3rd) parties. The form is used for protecting trade secrets, which according to SC law consists of information that 1) is not readily accessible by the general public, and 2) is being protected, with reasonable effort, from being discovered.
A common use of the form is for potential business mergers, where one or both companies will need to share their business plans. Because the other company could use the business plan to undermine the party sharing it, using an NDA holds the learning party liable to ensuring the trade secret(s) remains safe.
Trade Secret Law
The law regarding trade secrets, Title 39 Chapter 8, consists of fourteen (14) sections that cover how stolen confidential information is handled by South Carolina courts. Below are all the sections found in the chapter, with a brief summary of each.
- § 39-8-10: The title of Chapter 8.
- § 39-8-11: This section was repealed in 1997 (ignore).
- § 39-8-20: Defines five (5) terms commonly used throughout the Act.
- § 39-8-30: Covers Trade Secrets and includes info ranging from employees’ obligation to keep trade secrets from being disclosed to ensuring contracts are not void (because of a lack of information).
- § 39-8-40: When the victim of misappropriation can recover damages.
- § 39-8-50: This section discusses injunctions and the situations in which the courts will order one to prevent a trade secret from continued abuse.
- § 39-8-60: Lists what the courts will do in order to protect a trade secret’s confidentiality, with the exception being a party having “substantial need” to release the information (the requirements of substantial need are listed).
- § 39-8-70: The amount of time a party can bring a case of misappropriation after discovering it (or when it should have been discovered); the amount of time being three (3) years.
- § 39-8-80: When the court will award the cost of the winning party’s attorney’s fees.
- § 39-8-90: States an individual guilty of stealing trade secrets cannot be fined more than $100,000 or imprisoned in excess of ten (10) years and lists the actions that can warrant this punishment.
- § 39-8-100: What the court will do to protect a trade secret that can be disclosed during proceedings.
- § 39-8-110: How Chapter 8 affects other laws.
- § 39-8-120: A severability clause, generally stating if a provision of the chapter is null in regards to a certain circumstance, it does not affect the application of the other provisions within the chapter.
- § 39-8-130: States the chapter does not apply to cases of misappropriation that happened prior to July 1st, 1997 (including cases that began prior to that date and continued past it).