If you’ve lived on this happy little blue ball hurtling through space for long, you’ve probably signed a Non-Disclosure Agreement or NDA. In much more flowery legal language these lovely documents say that you (the signer) will keep quiet about whatever the other party wants to keep secret such as confidential company secrets, intellectual property and also various contract terms as appropriate. Makes sense, right? You can’t have various vendors and associates out there spilling all of the company’s secrets.
But a copy of one such agreement (from Leonardo DiCaprio’s Greenhour company) recently reviewed by The Los Angeles Times appears to demand that workers give up their rights to sue DiCaprio or Greenhour over a wide variety of claims, including harassment, invasion of privacy and infliction of emotional distress – “whether or not in connection with the development” of DiCaprio-related projects. According to the article that’s just one example of the terms of Hollywood confidentiality and non-disclosure agreements, documents that aim to protect personal or corporate information and have come under the spotlight since the Harvey Weinstein scandal erupted.
And it’s a good reminder to have legal counsel review pretty much anything you sign because you don’t want to accidentally give away your firstborn child (popular with Rumpelstilskin’s contracts) or give up your rights if the company with whom you’re working does something that REALLY should be disclosed.
NDAs are part of our world where disputes are as common as harassment complaints in Hollywood these days. And when they affect YOUR business, yell “Cut!” and bring in Oscar-nominated litigator Dean Sperling who will work to resolve YOUR matter with YOUR best interests in mind.
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