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What is a confidentiality agreement?
A confidentiality agreement is an agreement between parties to keep specified information confidential. Parties may be companies or individuals or a combination of these. One party may disclose confidential information to another, or both parties may exchange information.
What is confidential information?
Confidential information may be anything from a concept or business idea to a formula or plan to make something. As this type of confidential information may be difficult to protect under laws relating to other forms of intellectual property, such as trademarks or copyright, a confidentiality agreement may be an appropriate form of protection for the confidential information.
What information can be protected?
For information to be protected under a confidentiality agreement, information must have the necessary quality of confidence, that is, it cannot be information that is known to the public already. Information need not be novel, inventive or original, but must be some product of the mind that confers a confidential nature upon that information. To be protected, information must be provided in circumstances of confidentiality.
Parties can take legal action to protect confidential information. Please contact a solicitor using the AussieLegal Referral if you would like us to do this for you.
When should a confidentiality agreement be used?
A confidentiality agreement should be used in any situation where you are disclosing information you do not want others to know.
Common situations in which confidentiality agreements are used include:
What is in a confidentiality agreement?
Generally, a confidentiality agreement will:
What form should the agreement take?
An agreement may take the form of a letter, an agreement signed by the parties or their authorised representatives.
A letter may be used in a less formal situation, and should be signed by both the disclosing and receiving parties, or their authorised representatives, acknowledging the terms on which confidential information is made available.
An agreement or a deed is a more formal document, and will usually be longer. Again, it should be signed by the parties or their authorised representatives.
Information Outline is provided courtesy of McKean & Park Lawyers &
Consultants who are experienced in this area of law. They are located at 405
Little Bourke Street MELBOURNE VIC 3000
or call them on (03) 9670 8822 if
you would like more information on the legal topic, or you wish to obtain formal
advice regarding your situation.
& Park was established in 1863 by James McKean and thrives today with 20
professionals specifically in all major areas of practice including Workplace
Relations and Anti-Discrimination Law. The firm is proud of the fact that many
of its Lawyers are accredited specialists approved by the Law Institute of
Victoria. McKean & Park is committed to providing clients with comprehensive
and innovative legal services delivered promptly in a professional and cost
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