Marathon Asset Management LLP & Anor v Seddon & Ors [2017] EWHC 300 (Comm)

Breach of contract claim where 2 ex-employees copied files and retained them

The court ruled that the copying of files and retaining them when the defendants left the employment of the Claimant was in breach of their contract of employment. However, the damages were assessed at a nominal £1, the court rejecting the Claimant's argument that, even though the Defendants had copied and used just a few files, damages should be assessed according to what it would have cost to obtain lawfully the information contained in the entire collection (they used the 'dictionary' analogy, saying that even if someone only wanted to look up a few words, they would still have to buy the entire dictionary). The court held that the information contained in the files copied and retained was not a single corpus of information any part of which could only have been obtained lawfully by incurring the cost of acquiring all the information contained in those files. The files were a disparate collection of individual documents.

Read the full text of the judgment here

Published: 23/02/2017 10:28

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