Software Licensing

Software licenses are generally copyright licenses that also include general, technical, and other clauses. Because of the technical nature of how software can be used, there are new license models being created frequently with varying degrees of complexity. Licensing agreements can stand on their own like an End-User License Agreement or be embedded in a complex Master Services Agreement, among other varying structures. Our software licensing lawyers can help create the proper license agreement to mitigate the risks of the transaction.

It seems as though no two software licenses agreements are exactly alike. This is because no two computer programs operate the same, and the users may have different requirements as well. Licensing issues can occur when software is bought, sold, used, accessed, copied, modified, stored, distrubuted, etc. Our software licensing attorneys are experienced with software license agreement in many forms.

Software licesenses are used by software publishers to convey certain rights to its customers. Additionally, there is often a creative list of limitations that follows any software license that may greatly restrict the use of the software. 

Licensing can protect all of the parties by clearly documenting the uses, limitations, and intended purposes of the software. Business that enter into software license agreements should seek to understand the terms even if not necessarily in a position to bargain because failure to comply with the terms may carry financial and legal consequences for non-compliance or breach of the agreement. 

Software licensing lawyers at Kirkpatrick Law have experience reviewing, drafting, revising, and negotiating software licensing agreements for many companies from the start-up company to large enterprises. Many clients that hire our software licensing attorneys to review licensing agreements are often shocked to discover what has been incorporated into an agreement before our review and how it can impact the company if not dealt with properly. 

Our software licensing lawyers strive to explain licensing agreements to you in plain English, identify legal issues and business risks, and provide guidance on how to proceed. We also have experience in revising even the most complex technology agreements including cloud-based solutions, software development, and blended solutions. 

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Software Licensing Q&A's

Software Licensing Q & A's

Is my company is too small to have leverage to negotiate? +

Maybe. However, a legal review is still warranted to ensure that the company understands any legal issues for risk management, policy compliance, and contract compliance.

Can Kirkpatrick Law assist with selling licenses? +

Yes. Kirkpatrick Law assists clients with buying, selling, reviewing, drafting, negotiating, and advising on all software license legal matters.

What is license compliance? +

Users generally agree to terms and conditions, including limitations about how software can be used. Every product has a different license. Kirkpatrick Law can assist by auditing networks, reviewing license and entitlement documentation, and proactively or reactively bringing a business into compliance.

What is a non-exclusive license +

Non-exclusive software licenses are used by software publishers to grant a license to use the software to a user while retaining the right to sell the same software to other users. Non-exclusive licenses are typically used with mass-market software. 

What is an exclusive license? +

An exclusive license is where a license is granted to solely to a single party or set of parties. This type of license is often used where the developer wants to retain ownership of the source code while the licensee may have invested most of the funds required to develop the software. The developer may want the the option to use the software as a basis to enhance the code, while the investor can enjoy the use of the software exclusive from any competitors.

Why would I accept a revocable license? +

If reasons are not expressed in the agreement as to revocability, then one should request the reasons. If they are not acceptable, the the license should be reclassified as irrevocable. However, there are valid reasons to revoke a license. For example, a license could be reasonably revocable where the law later prohibits use of such software.