United States District Court, E.D. Louisiana
ORDER AND REASONS
TRICHE MILAZZO UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
the Court is Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment
(Doc. 67). For the following reasons, the Motion is GRANTED.
Brand Services LLC alleges that its former employee, James
Stanich, stole files containing confidential and proprietary
information belonging to Plaintiff when he left the company
to work with Defendant Irex Corporation. Plaintiff's
Complaint contends that Irex has acquired its trade secrets
and has profited off of this information. Plaintiff brings
claims under the Louisiana Uniform Trade Secrets Act
(“LUTSA”) and for the tort of conversion.
Defendant has filed the instant Motion for Summary Judgment
alleging that Plaintiff cannot show that it has suffered any
damages and therefore cannot succeed on its LUTSA claim.
judgment is appropriate “if the pleadings, depositions,
answers to interrogatories, and admissions on file, together
with affidavits, if any, show that there is no genuine issue
as to any material fact and that the moving party is entitled
to a judgment as a matter of law.” A genuine issue
of fact exists only “if the evidence is such that a
reasonable jury could return a verdict for the nonmoving
determining whether the movant is entitled to summary
judgment, the Court views facts in the light most favorable
to the non-movant and draws all reasonable inferences in his
favor. “If the moving party meets the
initial burden of showing that there is no genuine issue of
material fact, the burden shifts to the non-moving party to
produce evidence or designate specific facts showing the
existence of a genuine issue for trial.” Summary judgment
is appropriate if the non-movant “fails to make a
showing sufficient to establish the existence of an element
essential to that party's case.” “In
response to a properly supported motion for summary judgment,
the non-movant must identify specific evidence in the record
and articulate the manner in which that evidence supports
that party's claim, and such evidence must be sufficient
to sustain a finding in favor of the non-movant on all issues
as to which the non-movant would bear the burden of proof at
trial.” “We do not . . . in the absence of
any proof, assume that the nonmoving party could or would
prove the necessary facts.” Additionally, “[t]he
mere argued existence of a factual dispute will not defeat an
otherwise properly supported motion.”
moves for summary judgment on the grounds that Plaintiff
cannot show that it has suffered any actual damages or harm
from the alleged misappropriation of its trade secrets.
Defendant argues that under LUTSA, Plaintiff must show actual
loss caused by the misappropriation to succeed on its claim.
Plaintiff opposes this Motion, arguing that (1) Defendant has
refused to produce relevant documents that would aid it in
establishing its damages; (2) Plaintiff can show that
Defendant improperly used its trade secrets resulting in
unjust enrichment; and (3) Defendant failed to move for
dismissal of Brand's state law conversion claim. This
Court will consider each argument in turn.
Plaintiff contends that Defendant has not produced all of the
documents responsive to its requests, and it argues that
these documents are necessary for it to quantify its damages.
Prior to raising this argument in its opposition but after
the discovery deadline in this matter, Plaintiff filed a
Motion to Compel Production of Documents and a Motion for
Extension of Deadlines. Both of these motions were denied.
Accordingly, because the discovery deadline in this matter
has passed, Plaintiff cannot argue that discovery remains
that will assist it in defending this motion.
Defendant alleges that Plaintiff cannot show that it suffered
any damages because of the alleged misappropriation of its
trade secret. Under LUTSA, “[i]n addition to or in lieu
of injunctive relief, a complainant may recover damages for
the actual loss caused by misappropriation. A complainant
also may recover for the unjust enrichment caused ...