1. CONFIDENTIALITY IN BUSINESS PLANS
In order to fully protect the interests of a company or the creator(s) in regard to the implementation of a new business strategy, it is of paramount importance that the dissemination of confidential information relating to the business strategy is only made known to those in-house personnel who have a need to know in order to fulfil their contractual obligations to the company
If no provisions are put in place, the fortunes of a company may be unduly prejudiced and may lead to an adverse business situation with competitors.
2. CONFIDENTIALITY IN INVENTIONS
In order to protect the interests of a company or the devisor(s) in regards to an invention, it is essential to avoid, without exception, the publication of any details of the invention before a patent application has been filed at the UK-IPO, the Patent Office in Newport or at the IPO of any country where there is a business opportunity for exploitation of the invention.
If there is an absolute need to seek outside assistance for the development of an invention before the filing of a patent application, the disclosure of information to any third party should be kept at an absolute minimum for them to fulfil their contractual obligations.
The most expedient way of protecting the interests of a company or the devisor(s) in an invention(s) is to execute an equitable and enforceable Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) between the parties.
3. NON-DISCLOSURE AGREEMENTS -NDAs
The use of an equitable and enforceable NDA is the best way of protecting the IPRs of a business; however, some large companies may be reluctant to enter into such arrangements because of the global activities of their associate companies. If this situation arises, provision can be made within the terms and conditions of the NDA; otherwise, it is recommended that no arrangement is entered into with such companies.
*John Grant is Senior Patent Attorney at Trevor Baylis Brands (TBB) plc. TBB has provided advice to thousands of individuals and companies on the best way to develop their business and protect their intellectual property. Building Enterprise (BE) Ltd is a new development from TBB offering a one-stop shop for innovation development, helping to take initial ideas through to a successful commercial outcome.*
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