From tiny companies to large corporations, millions of intellectual property contracts are signed every year. Major Hollywood films need music and commercials may choose to use preexisting logos or characters to sell their products. Most companies have large numbers of intellectual property lawyers on staff that do nothing other than research and create contracts that are beneficial to their side, but if you are a small time company or a individual that has decided to purchase the rights to use a preexisting piece of intellectual property, here are a few easy tips you should keep in mind that could help you in the future.
First off, you should use a qualified intellectual property lawyer each and every time you enter into an official intellectual property contract. As the Internet has allowed for instant access to a never ending stream of information, more and more people seem to believe that they can function as their own legal representation. From minor court cases to selling their own home, the DIY spirit is stronger than it has ever been before, but the world of intellectual property law is easily one of the most complex and complicated on earth, and when you take intellectual property law on a global scale into account as well, the whole thing can be utterly overwhelming. No matter how qualified you think you are, you should use an intellectual property lawyer each time, every time. After all, you are entering into a complicated, legally binding contract so it is always a good idea to have an expert on your side who is going to look out for your best interests.
As the world of media changes and evolves on a seemingly daily basis, many old intellectual property contract templates are woefully obsolete. When you meet with an intellectual property rights holder to negotiate or sign your contact, you need to be positive that the two of you have effectively communicated exactly how you are planning on using the property you are buying. If you intend on using your purchase mainly online or in other forms of digital media, make sure the property holder understands that and that your contract explicitly allows that. If your contact allows for digital media usage but forbids certain types of print media usage, make sure you follow the letter of the contract exactly. Lawsuits in this field can cost millions of dollars, so now is the time to clarify any questions you may have.
Just as with other kinds of contracts you may sign in your life, intellectual property contracts often have time limits. You may have the option of singing a new contract at that time or all rights regarding that piece of intellectual property may revert back to the original owner. Be sure that you have discontinued usage of any intellectual property you have purchased by the date specified or you could be opening yourself up to a lawsuit that could cost you a bundle.