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Should a settlement agreement have a confidentiality clause?

What do confidentiality & mutual non-disparagement agreements look like in a settlement agreement? When there is a dispute and a claim for damages in a personal injury case or a real estate case, these matters often resolve with settlement agreements. Settlement agreements often have confidentiality agreements for the benefit of both parties. In these situations, the Plaintiff may be an injured person hurt from a work injury or a family member suing for wrongful death. Other cases may involve suits for failure to disclose problems with real estate. Settlement agreements in such cases may include confidentiality and mutual non-disparagement clauses like those identified in numbers 1-4 below.

1. The Parties, Plaintiffs and Defendants agree that they will not at any time or in any manner, either directly or indirectly, divulge, disclose, or communicate in any manner any information that is the subject of this settlement agreement, including its terms and content.

               2.  The Parties agree to refrain from making any derogatory statement or comment to the public that is derogatory in nature.

               3. The Parties will not make, and agree to use their best efforts to cause the officers, directors and spokespersons of the Parties and/or of any person directly or indirectly controlling, controlled by or under common control with any of the Parties including affiliates to refrain from making, any public statements. The Parties will not authorize any statements to be reported as being attributed to the Parties that are critical or derogatory.  The Parties shall instruct such officers, directors, employees and spokespersons to refrain from making such statements.

               4. Each party hereto acknowledges and agrees that each other party hereto will be irreparably harmed and that there may be no adequate remedy at law for a violation of any of the covenants set forth in this section. Therefore, in addition to and without limiting any other remedies that may be available to any party hereto, upon any such violation or threatened violation.

- Article By: Richard Weaver

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