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number77
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agreeing to terms, for review
« on: Jun 21st, 2006, 8:38am »
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I have a provisional patent.  I am trying to submit it for review to an automanufacturer or auto parts manufacturer.  However, all these require that I sign a form or they will not consider the idea.  These are saying that they only owe me what either they put in a contract, or what a court decides.
How limiting is that?  If they steal the idea, what other ways would they have to pay?
An example of these agreements can be seen on their webpages.
http://www.gm.com/automotive/innovations/new_devices/html/dwnlds/sub_for m.PDF
 
http://www.dana.com/technology/PDFs/InventionLetter&Release.pdf
Thank you for any input.
« Last Edit: Jun 21st, 2006, 8:39am by number77 » IP Logged
Isaac
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Re: agreeing to terms, for review
« Reply #1 on: Jun 21st, 2006, 9:08am »
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on Jun 21st, 2006, 8:38am, number77 wrote:
I have a provisional patent.

 
You don't have a patent at all.  You are the proud owner of a provisional application for a patent.   I think the distinction while always important is particularly important here where we discuss an agreement discussing patent rights.
 
The agreement appears to be intended to protect GM from being sued by you and does not appear to protect you in any way that in which you would not be protected if you did not sign the agreement.   In particular, if you had any expectation of non disclosure based on state law or even based on a signed NDA, the agreement would appear facially to prevent you from suing on that basis.
 
Quote:

If they steal the idea, what other ways would they have to pay?

 
GM has a legitimate concern that you might sue them based on something that turns out to be public knowledge or based on learning something from you that they already knew or were working on and would have discovered.   This agreement appears to go well beyond protecting that.  
 
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Isaac
number77
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Re: agreeing to terms, for review
« Reply #2 on: Jun 21st, 2006, 9:38am »
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on Jun 21st, 2006, 9:08am, Isaac wrote:

GM has a legitimate concern that you might sue them based on something that turns out to be public knowledge or based on learning something from you that they already knew or were working on and would have discovered.    

The "would have discovered" part also makes me a bit nervous.  Because of the nature of the idea (all auto manufacturers are researching it) it would be very easy for them to falsly generate proof that they would have discovered it in the future.
 
My main concern is giving up rights I didn't know I had, or being tricked into giving up my idea/s.
 
 
Thank you for your response.   Smiley
« Last Edit: Jun 21st, 2006, 9:44am by number77 » IP Logged
Isaac
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Re: agreeing to terms, for review
« Reply #3 on: Jun 21st, 2006, 10:37am »
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on Jun 21st, 2006, 9:38am, number77 wrote:

The "would have discovered" part also makes me a bit nervous.  Because of the nature of the idea (all auto manufacturers are researching it) it would be very easy for them to falsly generate proof that they would have discovered it in the future.

 
IMO, the agreement would remove the need for them to attempt such a proof.
 
 
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Isaac
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