Who owns the patent for fixtures when used in conjunction with other products? 2 Answers as of May 02, 2011

If a fixture is made to produce a product for a third party company, is that fixture owned by the company the product is being made for?

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Mark S. Hubert PC
Mark S. Hubert PC | Mark Hubert
No unless specified by contract - although the fixture may not be used to make any of the patent devices without a license or permission form the patent holder.
Answer Applies to: Oregon
Replied: 5/2/2011
DANIEL NESBITT | Hasse & Nesbitt
There is insufficient information in your scenario. Factors are: who made the invention/are the inventors? Who paid for the fixture, or how has the cost of the fixture been addressed? What was the oral and written agreement of the parties? Were there any obligations on the fixture maker to keep information about the product specifications or fixture details confidential? Also, are there other ways of making the product that do not require use of that particular fixture? There may also be "shop rights" in any invention. Seek the counsel of a patent attorney in your state.
Answer Applies to: Ohio
Replied: 4/29/2011
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