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I design patterns for use on end products. Where do I find a licensing agreement for to protect copyright & conditions?

Madison, WI |

Licensing conditions & protection of copyright are the main issues.

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Attorney answers 4


Please hire a good business attorney with IP expertise (or just a straight IP attorney). Licensing is extremely complicated and should only be considered after consulting with counsel.

I have been involved in plenty of arrangements where the business person wanted to save a few dollars by finding and drafting some form without a single idea of the issues and complexity. That agreement then became part of a dispute or serious losses and then they contact me. The cost for me to advise and try to resolve the matter is a large multiple of what it would have cost to just hire me or any other qualified attorney in the first place.

Just spend a few minutes looking at the questions on this forum to have an idea of the risks of just trying to DIY complicated issues. Good luck.

This answer is for informational purposes only and is not legal advice regarding your question and does not establish an attorney-client relationship.


You find them in an IP attorney's office after a free initial consultation. Finding them anywhere else is foolish. If you design patterns for a business you need to work closely with an IP attorney so you are protected. Copyright is automatic, so you are not even using the right terminology. You may well need design patents if you are adding ornamentation appearance to functional products, but you need to have an IP attorney review that so you don't inadvertently cut short the longer term of a copyright. For licensing, which is basically a covenant not to sue, you DON'T just out and "find a form". They have to be custom made for what you are licensing and they need to be done by someone who knows what form actually applies best to your situation, and that requires knowing what law applies and what problems you need to address now so that you solve them before they arise. If you just go out and get a form, you will likely just create more problems rather than less.

I am not your lawyer and you are not my client. Free advice here is without recourse and any reliance thereupon is at your sole risk. This is done without compensation as a free public service. I am licensed in IL, MO, TX and I am a Reg. Pat. Atty. so advice in any other jurisdiction is strictly general advice and should be confirmed with an attorney licensed in that jurisdiction.


I agree with both previous responses. You need an intellectual property / licensing contract attorney to assist in protecting your IP and negotiating any related licensing agreement. Copyright is easy enough. Design patents a bit more complicated and licensing is too unfortunately more involved than you may think. You’ll need to consider territory, term, exclusivity, scope, moral / product limitations (excluding your design from racist or anti-Semitic products, etc.) and a variety of other licensing terms. Suggest you consult a law firm in your area.

Best of luck
212 813-3153


As the other attorneys have suggested, you need a lawyer who drafts licensing agreements. I do this type of work in Dane County and welcome you to give me (or another qualified business lawyer) a call to help you protect your design patterns.

Attorney Megan Phillips practices in Dane County, Wisconsin and surrounding counties. She may be reached at (608) 358-6762. The response provided in this forum is not intended to create an attorney-client relationship. The information offered in this response is for general informational purposes only and should not be relied upon without further consultation with a legal professional.