The intellectual property of your business is a serious matter and must be protected. Product Design & Development (PD&D) recently shared an article, 5 Ways to Protect Intellectual Property, that provides helpful insight into the main topics that need to be covered in a strategic alliance agreement.
There are five topics that should be covered in any agreement where intellectual property is involved:
- Ownership of Intellectual Property: Frequently, one or more of the parties is bringing pre-existing intellectual property to the partnership. It is important to specifically identify and reserve its ownership within the contract.
- Licenses to Intellectual Property: Commercializing the new development will also require some cross-licensing of intellectual property rights and should cover both pre-existing and new intellectual property. These licenses need to be carefully tailored to the particular rights that the licensee needs.
- Responsibility for Obtaining and Maintaining Patents: Patents are an important part of intellectual property protection. Joint development agreements should include detailed provisions about which party will take the lead in obtaining and maintaining them.
- Responsibility for Prosecuting Infringers: It is often easier to agree to the allocation of responsibility and cooperation prior to an infringement, rather than after the infringement has occurred.
- Term and Termination: It is tricky to unwind a product collaboration if intellectual property is jointly owned. So careful thought during negotiations and drafting can prevent problems if the agreement terminates.
All strategic alliance agreements are unique in their own way but, when intellectual property is involved these five points are critical and should be included in the final agreement.
Below are a few additional articles that provide helpful intellectual property and patent information…
- New study suggests patent trolls really are killing startups Source: ARS Technica
- Startups and IP Strategy (Blog)
- How Patents Work Source: How Stuff Works
If you have additional intellectual property or patent questions please feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
3D Innovations is a full service 3D Engineering/Design company – from the 3D Design to a fully functional 3D Prototype & Product.