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Hello my name is Alex and I will help you with this. Please note that I am a working Solicitor and may be on and offline as I have to attend Court and meet with clients, even at weekends. As such you may not get an instant response when you reply as this is not an ‘on demand’ live service, but rest assured I will be giving your question my immediate attention upon return. There is no need to wait here, you will get an email when I reply.
Did you have any form of contract with the development company please?
yes i did sign a contract with the said company
and believe some of the terms provide them with full copyright
however there are other terms such as:
'You also own text contant, photographs and other date provided, unless someone else owns them
What about the data or the software?
thats covered in their very small print which is hardly visible,
What does it say?
unless otherwise stated on completion and settlement of all agreed fees copyright of design; and text; and images; and animation; and film; and programming; and scripting; and database design is owned by XXXX
Its bad news then I am afraid.
xxxx refers to the company who I would rather not state
also item 6:
If there is a contract and you signed it, then you are bound by its terms and conditions.
Yes, but is there no recourse for IP?
seeming that it says we own the text photos and other data provided?
Sadly not - this is because you have signed a contract that you sign everything over
You have signed a contract which states they own everything
are they not in breach of a conflict of interest?
As this is a business to business contract you do not have the same rights as if this would be a consumer contract.
No - because there is nothing in the terms to state they are in breach
Unless the agreement stated otherwise they can do what they want with it
I am sorry if this is not the answer you want and it is certainly not the one I want to give, but I have a duty to be honest.
Can I clarify anything about this for you today please?
it also states that 'you own the graphics and other visual elements that we create for you for this project'
OK - so you own those bits but not the software code.
i'm trying to find some angle to get something back
so if indeed the visual elements are ours, would I be right in thinking they could have the same functionality but would need to alter the format of how it looked and also change all content which we aided?
You can in terms visual elements, but not in terms of the code.
So if they changed the visuals then they would not be in breach of IP.
OK, so thats of interest, if the visual element remains the same and is live, what recourse would I have?
You could sue for breach of IP of that.
But it would be hard to put a value on it.
You need to write and set out your losses and request a remedy within 14 days or say you will go to Court within 14 days. You should make sure you send this recorded delivery and keep a copy.
If they do not remedy you then you can issue proceedings in the County Court. You can either do this online at: www.moneyclaim.gov.uk or by completing form N1 http://hmctsformfinder.justice.gov.uk/courtfinder/forms/n001-eng.pdf and take it to your local County Court.
The Court will then issue a claim which a copy will be sent to the Defendant who will have a limited time to defend it, if not you can enter Judgment and enforce.
If the matter is defended it will be set down for a trial. If the claim is for £10,000 or less it will be a small claim and you will not need representation.
Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?
I am currently trying to find out what this system looks like, but will need to sign up to their data base
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how would i go about pricing my loss?
I believe the small claims would be best as cannot afford huge legal fees
You can put TBA and let the Judge decide.
You can put the claim would be £10,000 or less to make sure it is a small claim
OK, great, how would you term this statement to the courts>?
Just when it asks for the value - TBA but less than £10,000
TBA by the small claims courts?
Yes, but make sure it says less than £10,000
So my understanding is that I should look to detail as much as possible?
for the benefit of the claim?
Yes in particulars.
I believe there is some conflict in the terms
sayihe graphics and visula elements
but then in a nother clause stating:
ok - but then images are still yours
I can see this one being a fine line of what has been breached, but will need to let the courts decide.
if i state my issue with the system and they change it by just tweeking the design slightly, I will loose any opportunity to get finacial recourse?
No - because unless it says Beta then you can.
what constitutes as a change from the original design
I can't say that would be for a Judge
Ok, sorry, beta?
Would you advise me getting my letter reviewed by a solicitor before sending out?
You don't need to as it would be a small claim.
but did you not advise that i will have to write a letter to them first? which they need to respond to in 14 days?
You need to write and set out your losses and request a refund within 14 days or say you will go to Court within 14 days. You should make sure you send this recorded delivery and keep a copy.
If they do not refund you then you can issue proceedings in the County Court. You can either do this online at: www.moneyclaim.gov.uk or by completing form N1 http://hmctsformfinder.justice.gov.uk/courtfinder/forms/n001-eng.pdf and take it to your local County Court.
ok, i hope this will provide me with some valuable information, i appreciate your time.