Some marriages include a prenup (prenuptial agreement) to prepare in advance for any breakdown, but most do not.
Business partnerships do not usually last forever, so what happens to the IP afterwards?
The smaller business is frequently so flattered to be given the opportunity to work with BigCo that they accept their terms as given. Some even agree to sort out the co-created IP later on! But these approaches only serve to make the lawyers happy and rich.
It is not even close to front of mind when in the throws of the romance of partnerships, but preparing more for the divorce than for the wedding is good advice when it comes to IP.
When planning for partnerships remember IP is in the name (partnershIP) and needs to be planned for in advance.
What is the background IP - yes all of it including know-how and trade secrets?
Who will own the foreground IP? How will ownership be split?
And who will own any sideground IP?
You may have agreed who gets to keep the cat, but what about those lovely cute kittens?
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Author: John Pryor Exalt IP