Securing Your Intellectual Property During the Liquidation Process

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Recently one of our clients found themselves in an unfortunate situation. Having employed a tech start-up to create an app for them, the tech company found itself going into liquidation just a few short months before the completion deadline.

One of the key issues that was faced was securing the intellectual property rights in the work that had been completed thus far. Having key provisions of the software agreement being drafted poorly, our client was faced with the prospect of relinquishing their rights to all works completed due to key wording regarding the assignment of title only being available upon full payment and completion.

This presents us two issues both of which require keen attention when dealing with young tech companies that quite often fall as fast as they rise. One, the necessity of carefully framing and drafting the contractual terms of ownership of the intellectual property rights. Two, issues of what is to happen in the worst-case scenario i.e. the employed company going into liquidation.

Forbes magazine recently discussed the alarming figure that over 90% of tech start-ups fail within two years after their creation. Therefore, as with any contract, you must undertake an exercise of peering into the future to assess all possibilities and eventualities. In this instance, insolvency is not an unlikely event to occur in the tech start-up industry. Furthermore, this important fact is compounded given the courts ever-increasing tendency to attach copyright laws to source code.

If you have any questions regarding your intellectual property rights and would like us to review your contractual arrangements please contact us as soon as possible.




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Raea Khan Circle
Director Lawyer
Raea Khan

Raea is Managing Director and Principal Lawyer for PBl Law Group. Raea assists clients with major projects, property developments, construction and strata law.

He has worked in Western Australia and Queensland assisting with expansion projects in the energy and resource sector and now predominately advises clients in Strata and Community Association matters.

He is a member of the Australian College of Strata Lawyers where majority of his work is advising developers and owners corporations with dispute related minor and major defects, strata governance and common property litigation. He is proficient at leading negotiations and meetings.

Raea has a particular interest in the commercial aspect of any dispute and always tries to weigh up the risk, reward and benefit of legal proceedings at each different stage.

Raea enjoys all forms of competitive sport, including Crossfit and actively participates in Triathlons, representing Australia as an age group athlete. He was a member of Red Head Surf Lifesaving club.

  • Strata Law
  • Construction & Major Projects
  • Commercial and Business Law
  • Planning & Environment Law