Intellectual Property (IP), like many other property rights, can be sold, purchased, mortgaged, licensed and transferred between people or companies. The sale and acquisition of IP rights could be crucial to the success of your business, but the value of IP can be effectively wiped-out if there are uncertainties surrounding the legal ownership of the IP in question and if licenses etc. have not been properly executed and recorded.
It is important to ensure that any transfer or license of IP is correctly dealt with and recorded as soon as possible.
In most cases, IP transactions have to be recorded at the relevant IPO to be fully effective. At Hutchinson IP, we provide fixed-fee, rapid turnaround IP transaction services before the UKIPO, EPO, WIPO and OHIM (for Community Designs only).
We can provide template assignment documents and confirmatory assignment documents (where the parties wish to keep the actual assignment out of the public domain) in relation to patents, designs and copyright. We can also attend to “batch” transfers, e.g. where entire IP portfolios are transferred from one party to another.
Similarly, where an entity undergoes a change of name, address or legal form, we can attend to updating the relevant IP registers to reflect this in a timely and cost-effective manner.
Another important consideration is how the right to the grant of a given IP right passes from the original creator of the right (e.g. the inventor or the designer) to the applicant (e.g. his/her employer or business partners). There are various circumstances whereby the rights transfer automatically from one party to another, but in many cases these “automatic transfer” provisions do not apply and there are formalities that must be complied with to ensure that the applicant actually enjoys the rights in the IP in question. A few recent high-profile cases have highlighted the imperative for very close attention to be paid to this particular area, and we will be happy to advise you in this regard and to provide the necessary documentation to ensure that your rights as the inventor or applicant are properly safeguarded. We can help you to settle disputes regarding IP ownership and can provide representation in respect of such disputes.
In most cases, we can attend to IP transactions on a fixed fee basis – please contact us for further details.