Licensing involves an agreement made between a licensor, who owns a form of intellectual property, and a licensee, who will be using it. A licensing agreement is legally binding and includes the terms of the contract and the relationship between the two parties. These agreements also include information such as compensation, royalty, fees, and exclusivity requirements. Copyrights, patents, trade secrets, and trademarks have different types of licensing agreements associated with them.
Licenses can allow for a company to generate revenue through royalty payments made by the licensee. Other uses for licensing include ownership, asset value, or increase portfolios. Licensing can be a good way for a business to enter into a new market, as there are low risks. Manufacturing is unnecessary when entering a market with licensing, and the property owner still has some control over the image of the IP.
In some cases, licensing is used on copyrights to receive a profit from creative works. Additionally, software, character, and franchising agreements all use licensing to offer the creator of the intellectual property control and profit without investment. Licensing agreements specifically offer franchisors protection, as it keeps any trademarks used by franchisees safe.
Licensing can be a significant opportunity for many businesses but can lead to infringement. Our team of licensing attorneys works with their clients to draft, negotiate, and finalize licensing agreements. We are experienced with the requirements of licensing contracts and work collaboratively to create compliant arrangements. In some cases, a licensor or licensee does not follow the terms of the agreement. In these situations, our intellectual property litigation team assists in protecting the rights of our clients.