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3 Things You Need to Know About Confidentiality Agreements

On behalf of Steven Waldinger

It’s no secret that running a business is hard work, but confidentiality agreements can simplify your job and ensure you’re legally protected in many ways. If you’re interested in learning about these agreements, it may be time to meet with a commercial attorney who can help. here’s what you need to know.

Whether you’re running a large corporation or you have a small family-owned business, it’s important to have all of the necessary legal paperwork to run your company smoothly. This includes business agreements, employee contracts, and shareholder agreements; however, your company may also benefit from utilizing a confidentiality agreement, as well. Confidentiality agreements offer a number of perks and benefits for company owners and managers. They provide an effective way to ensure that your conversations remain private between you and the other party; however, they can also protect your ideas, policies, and company financial information. If you’ve been thinking about drafting a confidentiality agreement with the assistance of a commercial law attorney, there are a few things you need to know.

1. Your agreement should be specific

One of the most important things to focus on when creating a confidentiality agreement is specificity. Your agreement needs to dictate exactly what information can be shared, what information is private, and how long the information should remain classified for. You should also make sure that you include specific dates and methods of communication in your contract. The more specific and precise your contract is, the more it will benefit both you and the person you’re working with.

2. Your agreement may need to contain an anti-solicitation clause

When you meet with investors, financial professionals, or even potential collaborators, it’s important to understand that sometimes competition is unavoidable. Someone may see your team members and believe they would make valuable assets within that person’s own organization. This can be prevented with a carefully worded section of your confidentiality agreement. An anti-solicitation clause can help prevent employee poaching that sometimes affects companies who work together.

3. Your agreement should detail exclusions

In some cases, an agreement needs to contain exclusions. If you and another party have worked together on a project before or they know a lot of details about your company, for example, it may not be reasonable to expect them to keep everything they learn or discuss private. Make sure you understand the current depth of the other party’s knowledge so that you can notate this in the contract. If they already knew information before you met to discuss a related issue, they may not be required to keep that particular data or information classified.

When you’re ready to create a non-disclosure or confidentiality agreement you can use in your business, it’s important to meet with a business or corporate law attorney as early as possible. Call to schedule your consultation. Your lawyer will be able to help evaluate your contract needs and can help you draft something that will benefit your organization.