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As a patent attorney, I talk with inventors and entrepreneurs all the time.

They will often mention that they have an NDA (non-disclosure agreement) that protects their innovation.

Then when I ask where the manufacturer, marketing guru, or code writer is located, they will say anything from a different state to a country on the other side of the planet.

NDAs are contracts, and like any contract you have to sue to enforce them.

Can you afford to sue a contractor located in another state? Can you afford to sue a computer programmer based out of, say, Mumbai, India?

My guess is “no,” and they know it even if you don’t.

I suggest that you still want to have an NDA in place because it gives you options. But I would not rely on it. Instead, I suggest that you focus on the reputation of the business and their referrals and references.

You know how you’re supposed to look before you leap. Well, research before you sign contracts or checks.

If you are going to have a company in India or China write your code or make your products, you want one of the highly reputable ones that is making so much money from their legitimate business that they would never dream of breaking your trust or knocking off your products. To find those businesses, I suggest you ask around to see who the winners are. They are the ones with the happy clients.

Or better yet, shop locally.

Looking for practical advice or local resources?

Call Childs Patent Law at 832-621-0353 to schedule a complimentary consultation with me and I will be happy to discuss how we work to help businesses protect their most valuable resources. We’re available Monday through Friday to answer your questions.

1. The Truth About NDAs
2. What do I do if potential investors won’t sign an NDA?
3. Who May NOT Be Willing to Sign an NDA?
4. Who Should Definitely Sign NDAs?
5. Can You Afford to Enforce Your NDA?
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