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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 50156
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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I helped a friend who is an accountant by writing

Customer Question

I helped a friend who is an accountant by writing some Microsoft Excel macros to automate a lot of work. The company he works for has come to rely on the work I did and uses it to provide a service to their customers.
Could I ask for royalties or any other kind of financial compensation for my work?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. Did you give permission for the company to use these or just this person?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I knew that it was going to be used at his work place when I did the work. He asked me to help him out on something he was stuck with and I ended up writing about 100 lines of code along with some notes to help them adapt it further if needed so I did give permission.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
If you can shoe that you were the original creator of the code, i.e. that this was something unique which you had created, rather than just applying already existing work, then you can claim copyright over it. As the copyright owner you have the right to decide who uses the work in question and if you wanted to – charge a licence fee to allow such use. You did initially provide consent for the code to be used by them so they can argue that they already have the required consent so to try and remove that you should find a way to show that they had breached what they were allowed to do initially. This may not be that easy assuming they have used it for whatever you were aware of at the time and there were no breaches. Saying that, there is nothing stopping you from approaching them and asking for a usage licence fee. Tell them that you wish to be paid for the work and if that does not happen then you will withdraw your consent and if they continue using it you will consider taking action for breach of copyright. You may not wish to go that far but saying it could be used as a negotiating ground. I hope this has answered your query. I would be grateful if you could please take a second to leave a positive rating (3, 4 or 5 stars) as that is an important part of our process and recognises the time I have spent assisting you. If you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me on here and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Hello, I see you have read my response to your query. If this has answered your question please take a second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars from the top of the page. I spend a lot of time and effort answering individual queries and I am not credited for my time until you leave your rating. If you still need further help please get back to me on here and I will assist as best as I can. Many thanks.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Hello, do you need any further assistance or are you happy with the above response? Look forward to hearing from you.