Why I Don’t Sign NDAs, Mostly

As a general rule, I don’t sign NDAs; meaning non-disclosure agreements, because as a general rule, NDAs are BS, meaning b******t. Here’s the thing, NDAs serve a narrow function. Enforcing confidentiality when no other legal structure would require it. It’s why you don’t need Lawyers or medical personnel to sign an NDA. You also don’t need an NDA to prevent the disclosure of information that would otherwise be a crime.  NDAs are for trade secrets, and times someone’s work for hire needs to be treated as a trade secret. Someone working on new technology, or being hired to ghostwrite a book that they can never acknowledge having written.  Oh, NDAs also work well when a company wants a legal tool to bully former contractors and employees if the need arises. The tobacco industry famously used NDAs as a legal threat towards associates to prevent them from testifying about known health risks associated with smoking.  Frivolous Lawsuits Are Not Fun When everyone is honest and above board, NDAs best serve all parties when they are specifically defined. For an employer, a clear and precise agreement is more likely to result in successful court rulings, should lawsuits occur. The benefit to employees is a lower likelihood of being sued frivolously or bullied with threats of erroneous legal action. The confidential definition of an NDA being too broad isn’t favorable to a company in court.  However, even when fighting a bad, non-specific NDA, when you have clear defenses around publicly and priorly known…Why I Don’t Sign NDAs, Mostly

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