Case Study: Sheila Mason and Craig Shepherd Essay

929 Words Nov 19th, 2012 4 Pages
1. Evaluate the situation in which Mason and Shepherd find themselves with respect to their existing employers. What legal and ethical issues do you see and how would you advise them to proceed? Mason's endeavor for the venture creation is strictly bounded by her employment agreement with ATS. That is to say, she will be in clear violation of the Noncompetition, Nonsolicitation, Nondisclosure and Development provisions, if she plans to pursue the venture within one year by utilizing the information and social network she gained from the company. So the first barrier she need to tackle is to prove this new business is not in competition with ATS at all. Also she cannot speak with any current customers of ATS. These limitations …show more content…
If they sign the NDA, they could face prosecutions from several other companies that are similar to the one they invest.
However, this does not necessarily mean entrepreneurs will not be protected at all. When comes to intellectual properties, most of the VCs will follow the unwritten rules. It is their responsibility to protect the company’s information. If they break the rules and the word has gotten out about their misconducts, they as investment companies will lost their credits in the industry and so they will not be able to maintain their business anymore.

3. Do Mason and Shepherd need a lawyer? How should they select one?

I would highly recommend Mason to hire a lawyer because she is highly susceptible to litigation from ATS. Noncompetition, nonsolicitation, nondisclosure and development provisions limited her action during the firs year. If she wants to develop her startup by utilizing the information and social resources that she gained from ATS right away, she needs a lawyer to protect her against potential litigation.

Shepherd also needs a lawyer, even more badly and urgently than Mason, because he has to protect the core value of the venture, the translation engine. As his agreement with nova states, he should “communicate” all the inventions made or conceived to the company. However, from my understanding, “communicate” doesn’t mean “give”. The

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