United States District Court, D. Minnesota
Kathleen Harrell-Latham, Esq. and Loop Legal PLLC, counsel
J. Conley, Esq. and Law Office of Thomas J. Conley, counsel
S. DOTY, JUDGE.
matter is before the court upon the motion to dismiss by
defendant MyAlerts, Inc. (formerly known as TrackIF). Based
on a review of the file, record, and proceedings herein, and
for the following reasons, the motion is granted and the case
is dismissed with leave to file in state court.
trade secret and contract dispute arises from the
parties' executive recruiting agreement. In approximately
September 2015, defendant and plaintiff Search Partners Inc.
(SPI) executed an agreement whereby SPI agreed to recruit and
provide names of prospective employees to MyAlerts in
exchange for a fee. Compl. ¶¶ 15-18; Conley Aff.
October 13, 2015, after detailed negotiations, one of the
candidates SPI referred to MyAlerts, Mr. Babcock, declined
MyAlerts' offer of employment. Compl. ¶¶ 21,
25-28. SPI alleges that at some point later, however,
MyAlerts contacted Babcock to again discuss the position.
Id. ¶ 29. In approximately March 2016, MyAlerts
formally offered Babcock the job and he accepted.
Id. ¶¶ 30-31. When SPI later learned that
Babcock worked for MyAlerts, it demanded payment from
MyAlerts under the contract. MyAlerts refused to pay SPI.
Id. ¶ 33.
April 3, 2017, plaintiff commenced this suit raising several
claims against defendant. Count I alleges a violation of the
Defend Trade Secrets Act (DTSA), 18 U.S.C. § 1832; Count
II alleges a violation of the Deceptive Trade Practices Act
(DTPA), Minn. Stat. § 325D.43; Count III alleges breach
of contract; Count IV alleges unjust enrichment; and Count V
alleges conversion. Defendant now moves to dismiss.
Standard of Review
survive a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim,
“‘a complaint must contain sufficient factual
matter, accepted as true, to state a claim to relief that is
plausible on its face.'” Braden v. Wal-Mart
Stores, Inc., 588 F.3d 585, 594 (8th Cir. 2009) (quoting
Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009)).
“A claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff
[has pleaded] factual content that allows the court to draw
the reasonable inference that the defendant is liable for the
misconduct alleged.” Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678
(citing Bell Atl. Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544,
556 (2007)). Although a complaint need not contain detailed
factual allegations, it must raise a right to relief above
the speculative level. Twombly, 550 U.S. at 555.
“[L]abels and conclusions or a formulaic recitation of
the elements of a cause of action” are not sufficient
to state a claim. Iqbal, 556 U.S. at 678 (citation
and internal quotation marks omitted).
court does not consider matters outside the pleadings under
Rule 12(b)(6). Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(d). The court may, however,
consider matters of public record and materials that are
“necessarily embraced by the pleadings.”
Porous Media Corp. v. Pall Corp., 186 F.3d 1077,
1079 (8th Cir. 1999) (citation and internal quotation marks
omitted). Here, the court considers the parties'
Defense of Trade Secrets Act
alleges that MyAlerts violated the DTSA by using SPI's
proprietary candidate information for its economic benefit.
Compl. ¶¶ 39-40. The DTSA creates a private cause
of action in favor of the “owner of a trade secret that
is misappropriated ... if the trade secret is related to a
product or service used in, or intended for use in,