Hi. Thanks for your reply.
I am am currently an employee of the company. However, they are trying to get rid of me by constructive means.
The template which they are using was created by myself before my employment (and is therefore my IP).
There is a vague clause in the contract which relates to IP. The relevant section is this:
"22. Intellectual Property Rights
You must disclose to The Company any product, process, know-how, design, writing or similar tangible or non-tangible manifestation of knowledge that you create, make or discover whether alone or jointly, in association with your employment or which is relevant to the company.
Any Intellectual Property is owned solely by the company and you must comply with reasonable requests to assist in the preparation or execution of all/any documents necessary for the protection and exploitation of any rights connected with Company Intellectual Property. "
I stress that the template they are using was created by myself months in advance of my employment. It was not a condition of my employment, and there is no mention of it anywhere in my contract. The only way it is "relevant to the company" is the fact that they are using it.
I also have emails from the managing director, where he states that he will not offer me a new contract unless I agree to sell him the IP rights of the template (therefore establishing that to both of our respective understandings, I solely own the IP of the template). We didn't agree a fee and we carried on working to an old existing contract (which contained the above clause).
On a final note - if I ask them to stop using my template, can I ask them to stop using it with immediate effect? For example, if I give them an option to buy the template for a certain amount of money, and they refuse, then can I ask them to stop using it with immediate effect (with the consequence of having to pay the fee I am asking if they do not), or am I obliged to offer some "reasonable" time scale for them to comply?
Thanks a lot,