Technology: The keys to technology licensing

Part 1: Understanding the basics

This series addresses the needs the legal community has for licensing technology knowledge by laying out the basic concepts that one should understand, identifies traps for the unwary and offers drafting and negotiating tips.

Business success increasingly depends on new technologies and the wise use of intellectual property rights. Often, these technologies and IP rights are developed or exploited in collaborative relationships, and having agreements clearly stating each party’s rights is absolutely critical. With the exception of software licensing, in my opinion, the legal community has not kept up. We lack a set of generally understood industry standards for technology licensing agreements. There are surprisingly few lawyers with the necessary combination of intellectual property knowledge and contract drafting/negotiating skills, so an attorney knowledgeable about licensing transactions can add significant value

Possible IP transfers

The types of IP transfers, ranked roughly by amount of rights transferred, are: an assignment, an exclusive license, a non-exclusive license and a covenant not to sue.


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Mark Malven

Mark Malven is the leader of the technology transactions practice at Dykema Gossett PLLC and immediate past chair of the IT Law Section of the...

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