In a recent Court of Appeal decision the Court has substantially increased the damages awarded for copying confidential material while also upholding a separate $2,000 damages award for breach of a restraint of trade provision, by setting up in opposition and distributing material.

The Court increased the damages to $20,000 for copying operational materials line by line in breach of the duty to keep materials confidential.  The Court held this was a flagrant breach justifying the 2000% increase in damages.  The defendant company was liable under the Copyright Act and the individual who breached the confidentiality was ordered to pay $20,000 exemplary damages.

These damages were awarded because actual damages were slight but the Court found it necessary to punish the flagrant breaches by the defendant who had copied the material and then aggravated matters with a denial of that copying.

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