Own-it | Intellectual Property Know-How for Creative Businesses


How can I ensure the IP rights I'm licensing are legitimate?

Published 01.11.08 at 09:30

In situations where IP rights are registered then you can rely upon the register as proof of ownership. For unregistered IP rights the situation is more difficult and it is advisable to ask for proof of IP ownership.

Practical steps: You should always insist that the person or company you are dealing with provides a written agreement which includes:

  • a guarantee (known as a warranty) that the person whose IP you are exploiting actually owns it or is entitled to license it
  • a guarantee (known as an indemnity) that if you become liable for the infringement of any IP rights that your costs will be paid for by that person/company.

It is also worth checking whether the person/company you are dealing with could afford to pay such costs. This can be done through credit checks and a company search.

Content supplied by Daniel McClean, solicitor at Withers LLP. Photo credit: aWee


Please note that this article discusses the legal position in the UK at the time of publication. It provides general information only but is not to be regarded as legal advice. You must take advice from a specialist lawyer in relation to your specific circumstances. Further, you should seek additional legal advice when dealing with parties based in other parts of the world or works originating from other parts of the world as the legal position may vary.


  1. Be the first to comment on this story.


You must be logged in to post comments. Please sign in below or register here.


Knowledge Search
    • Last Week
    • Past 30 days
    • Today
    • Last Month
    • No Limit
    • Any Sector
    • Advertising & Marketing
    • Architecture
    • Design
    • Designer Maker
    • Digital/New Media
    • Fashion
    • Film & Video
    • Museums & Galleries
    • Music
    • Performing Arts
    • Photography
    • TV & Radio
    • Visual Arts
    • Writing & Publishing

Related content

  • When Does Replacing a...

    Necessity is the mother of invention.  In ... view story

  • Warranty

    Parties are likely to want extensive contractua... view article