Clark Hill’s approach to technology transfer recognizes that the protection of our clients’ technology is an issue the moment the technology is created. Whether the creation is by a principal, an employee, a third-party service provider, or an unrelated supplier, the issue of ownership begins immediately.
We work with our clients to develop a formal strategy on how to respond to issues of technology creation and transfer. Depending on the parties involved, appropriate agreements are put in place to protect the client’s investment in that technology. These could include employee agreements, assignments, exclusive and non-exclusive licenses, and non-disclosure and confidentiality agreements.
Since intellectual property may have a life that extends through decades, negotiations of these agreements include discussion of potential events that may occur during the life of the technology, thus allowing the clients to have an expectation as to their responsibilities and the responsibilities of other parties who may be involved. Interests in technology through these various instruments often can be perfected through filings with appropriate federal and/or state agencies. Our intellectual property attorneys work closely with the entire Business practice group to ensure that our clients’ technology transfer documents coordinate with their business strategy.