This article posted on our partner site Mondaq.com discusses the importance of executing Intellectual Property assignment agreements when companies collaborate on research projects.
Companies can make whatever ownership arrangements they wish using these agreements. For instance, they can draft such agreements to ensure that the company retains IP ownership, regardless of inventorship or whether work is outsourced, or to ensure that ownership follows inventorship. The author refers to three (3) recent cases to demonstrate that an inventor may lose IP ownership if the IP assignment agreement entered into is broad, ambiguous, or unclear. This is a good article to read when drafting a licence or transfer agreement, and when considering the definition/nature of the intellectual property that is being transferred.