If you have a patent, or even better, a portfolio of patents, patent cross-licensing may be one of the strategies that you may want to consider or should be at the back of your head in the event that you need it. Patent cross-licensing is a legal arrangement between two or more businesses or individuals that allows the parties to share their patent(s) related to their technologies with each other. Patent cross-licensing includes having one party to grant the other party / parties a license to use the technology claimed in the patent(s), in exchange for a reciprocal license from the other party / parties.
General process of patent cross-licensing
1. Ownership of patents: Each party involved in the cross-licensing agreement must own one or more patents that they wish to share with the other party.
2. Identifying relevant patents: The parties involved need to identify which patents in their portfolio that are relevant to be shared; and which patents are beneficial to the other party or resolve any potential infringement issues.
3. Negotiation: The parties negotiate the terms of the cross-licensing agreement. This includes determining the list of patents involved, the scope of the license, any limitations or restrictions, royalty payments (if applicable), and the duration of the agreement.
4. Exchange of licenses: Once the terms are agreed upon, the parties exchange licenses granting each other the right to use their respective patented technologies.
Benefits of patent cross-licensing
Patent cross-licensing offers several benefits to businesses. It can help avoid costly litigation related to patent infringement, as the licenses granted in the agreement provide legal permission to use the patented technologies. Cross-licensing also promotes collaboration and innovation by allowing businesses to access and utilize each other's technologies, leading to the development of new products or improvement of existing ones.
It's important to note that patent cross-licensing can be complex, and it's advisable to consult with us or any patent agents to ensure compliance with patent laws and to protect the interests of your business.