Are US NDAs enforceable in other countries?


Are NDAs a safe thing to do when hiring out of the country? I'm hiring freelancers to do some mobile programming work, and they reside in France. They have, very kindly, signed the NDA I provided for them and seem trustworthy - the NDA also has a clause regarding other countries (that any disputes will be settled here, in the United States).

My questions is, how much can I trust someone from another country to abide by a United States NDA?

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asked Jun 23 '11 at 11:27
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3 Answers


The greatest limitation in enforcing your NDA against your French developers is that the provision stating that disputes must be resolved in the U.S. will be of little practical value.

Even if you obtain a judgment in the U.S., you will have to go to France to enforce it - a process that you probably would find to be far too expensive to justify.

I am concerned that you did not mention a more important issue: Have the parties signed an agreement by which you will own not only the code but all intellectual property rights therein? Moral rights are especially important in France (much more than in the U.S.) If no such agreement is in place, you have a much greater problem than breach of an NDA. Please see Why “Work Made for Hire” is a Term Made for Confusion.

Disclaimer: This information does not constitute legal advice and does not establish an attorney-client relationship.

answered Jun 24 '11 at 02:22
Dana Shultz
6,015 points
  • Another aspect is whether the judgement will be legally recognised in France. – Tehnyit 13 years ago


Agreement is an agreement; so technically it can be enforced in any county that has civil litigations... however, it's expensive & challenging to sue in other countries. The best NDA will be is a moral deterrent...

answered Jun 23 '11 at 16:50
66 points


You cant... actually its mostly trust and goodwill sorta deal. The company/freelancer you hire most likely wont leak your idea unless it becomes hugely successful... and by that time you already rock the market. I dont really believe in NDAs but still use them when I hire someone over seas. To let the company know I could get serious if they try to break it. But the fact is they can do whatever they want and either I wont know about it or I cant do anything about it.

answered Jun 23 '11 at 14:30
365 points
  • Although this answer has been accepted, and I'm certainly no lawyer, I'm 99% certain it's wrong in law! – Jeremy Parsons 13 years ago

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