Does your business license software from or to other businesses, or even consumers? If so, it is crucially important that there is a software license in place that properly manages the issues involved.
If you are the customer or licensee, it is vital that the license covers your use of the software. If it does not, your business could be exposed to claims from the software provider or licensor in relation to the unlicensed use. Often, the amount you then have to pay is more than you might have been able to negotiate at the outset.
Your business will also need to be protected against claims brought by third parties if the software you are using is alleged to infringe that third party’s intellectual property rights. You will also want contractual reassurance that the software you are paying for will provide the functionality it is supposed to offer, and you may want the provider to offer support. These are just a few of the many issues that need to be considered.
From the supplier’s point of view, the right kind of license will protect your intellectual property rights, control your risk exposure in the event of the software not performing as it should, and make sure that the scope of the license and license fees payable are clear. You will also want to make sure that you are only responsible for the software performing within specification and that you are not liable if the software is used outside its intended field of use.
It is also important to ensure that your business is not liable for third party intellectual property rights infringements claims. These might arise from your customer’s unlicensed use of the software, where it is used other than for its intended purpose, or where it is the use of the software in combination with other software that you have not provided that is the cause of the infringement.
At Star Legal, we can prepare or review your software licenses, so that you can be sure that all of the issues affecting your business have been properly dealt with. We can also negotiate software licenses on your behalf with the other party or their lawyers.
Whether you are buying or selling software, make sure your business is covered by contacting us today.