Monetary Damages May Not Be Available For Breaches of Certain Confidentiality Agreements

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A recent court case found that, when the government breaches certain types of confidentiality agreements with a private party, the private party may not be able to obtain monetary damages caused by that breach.  The case involved government employees violating a confidentiality agreement by discussing the nature of the plaintiff’s employment claim against the government and casting him in a negative light.  However, the court concluded that the purpose of the confidentiality provision in the case was to prevent statements made during the settlement efforts from being used in subsequent formal proceedings.  As a result, the court found that the plaintiff could not obtain monetary damages against the government caused by the breach.  The plaintiff’s sole remedy was to exclude the information from any future proceedings.

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