A Billion Dollar (Almost) Trade Secrets Dispute


The following article by Committee for Justice president Curt Levey was published on the Federalist Society blog:

Automated valuation models (AVMs) – computer models typically employing artificial intelligence (AI) and used to estimate property values for loan decisions among other things – are at the center of one of the biggest trade secret cases and largest punitive damages awards in American history. The case, Title Source v. HouseCanary, was the subject of a recent Federalist Society teleforum.

In March 2018, a Texas jury awarded HouseCanary, a Silicon Valley company specializing in residential real estate data and analytics, a jaw-dropping $700 million-plus in compensatory and punitive damages based on its claim that it possessed AVM-related trade secrets that were allegedly misappropriated by Amrock. Formerly named Title Source, Amrock is one of the nation's largest property valuation and title service companies.

Before the relationship between the two companies soured, Amrock agreed to license a mobile app for human appraisers that HouseCanary was developing. HouseCanary claims that it was during this time that Amrock misappropriated its trade secrets...

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