View Full Version : Property Rights for programmming

17-12-2003, 08:58 PM
I am doing some Access development for an incorporated society that I am associated with. It is all very informal, nothing in writing, but I am getting paid (extreme mate's rates) for it. So when it is complete, who owns what? Do they have all the rights, or do I retain some rights, or what? If there was something in writing, what would be a standard sort of arrangement?

Once it is all done, there is a (very small) possibility that other organisations would be interested in the system, which would then require personalization for their use. What sort of legal/financial arrangement might cover that eventuality? The initial approach would be through the society, not through me.

Any and all comments will be welcome.

17-12-2003, 09:26 PM
Addendum - just because I put 3 m's in programming doesn't mean I find it super yummy!

17-12-2003, 09:35 PM
IMHO , if there is no agreement to the contrary, you have written the program for them in exchange for monetary reward. They would own it. It would be better to make them sign a waiver before final acceptance of this job. Just to the fact that you own the software and they are entitled to utilise it in perpituity (only for that society) free of further charges apart from any modifications after acceptance.

Have a read of some of those EULA's that you click through ,an agreeing to so quickly :D

Murray P
17-12-2003, 09:37 PM
Usually when you are paid in a master servient relationship all the intellectual rights go to the employer. Have you brought any parts of the project, to the benefit of these people, from elsewhere.

You would be best to have a formal agreement with the people you are writing the software for. If your doing it on the cheap for them they may not mind especially if you couch it in terms of them getting something where nothing existed before. You may be able to enforce an informal arrangement especially in light of the reduced fee's but, why put yourself in the position of having to do so.

Having said all the above the best advice I could give you would be to get specific advice from a lawyer who is aware of the type of issues involved.

Cheers Murray P