What Makes Up an Intellectual Property Agreement?
3 minute read
April 19, 2024


In the business world, intellectual property (IP) agreements are among the most important tools for protecting and managing rights associated with creative works and inventions. But what makes up an IP agreement? 

You’d be surprised how many companies are clueless about what an IP agreement contains and what this common legal tool is designed to ultimately achieve.

IP agreements are a big deal

These agreements can cover a wide range of scenarios, from employment contracts that stipulate the ownership of work-created IP to licensing deals that allow others to use your IP. 

Understanding the key components of an IP agreement is essential for any business owner or inventor looking to secure their intellectual assets. 

In this article, we’ll break down the essential concept of owning an IP and the fundamentals of an intellectual property agreement.

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How do I claim ownership of intellectual property?

Claiming ownership of intellectual property involves formalizing the creation, use, and rights to IP through legal documents. 

When are IP agreements used? 

This claim is often made at the time of:

  • Employment
  • At the initiation of a partnership
  • When licensing agreements are established

Note: Clear documentation and agreements are critical to establishing and asserting your IP ownership—this should never be done haphazardly. 

What is the basic intellectual property clause?

A basic intellectual property clause in an agreement outlines the ownership, use rights, and responsibilities related to IP between the parties involved. 

Key elements of intellectual property include:

  • Definition of intellectual property: There is typically a need to clearly define what constitutes IP within the context of the agreement, including:
    • Inventions
    • Designs
    • Software
    • Trademarks
    • Copyrights
  • Ownership: A clause will specify who owns the IP created before and during the agreement—for employment agreements, it’s common for IP created by employees in the course of their job to be owned by the employer.
  • Use rights: Details are laid out about the rights of each party to use the IP, including licensing terms, exclusivity details, and any restrictions on use.
  • Protection and enforcement: This portion outlines the responsibilities for protecting the IP and the actions that will be taken in case of infringement.
  • Confidentiality: Provisions are included for maintaining the confidentiality of sensitive information related to the IP.
  • Duration: The term of the agreement is specified, along with the conditions under which it can be terminated.
  • Dispute Resolution: Finally, mechanisms for resolving disputes related to the agreement are also detailed—such as arbitration or litigation.

Crafting the right intellectual property agreement 

An intellectual property agreement is a fundamental part of a company’s strategy for securing and managing its IP rights. 

IP agreements not only clarify the ownership and use of intellectual property but also provide a legal basis for protection against infringement

The vital need for a strong IP agreement 

Whether you’re entering into an employment relationship, negotiating a partnership, or licensing your IP, a well-crafted IP agreement is essential. 

Understanding the basics of how to claim ownership and what constitutes a fundamental IP clause can empower business owners and creators to protect their innovative works and commercial interests effectively.

Choose Stanzione & Associates, PLLC, for your IP protection 

To protect your company with an IP, contact Stanzione & Associates, PLLC, for a free, no-obligation consultation today.

Don’t leave your intellectual property to chance.

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