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I have created a new product and just had my first conference with a potential engineering company to make me my first prototype. I did not invent this product, I just made it better and plan to actually bring it to the market in a way that will reach millions of people. I don’t need a patent, but I wanted to know what contract/paperwork I should have my engineer and anyone else involved with the project sign so as to protect my particular idea from being copied/otherwise
Asked on September 15, 2017 under Business Law, California
SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney
Answered 3 years ago | Contributor
BEFORE showing your product to anyone or discussing it with anyone, have them sign a nondisclosure agreement (NDA) in which they agree that you own the product idea and they have no rights to it; acknowledge that they are only being shown the product for the possibility of some business arrangement or agreement with you; agree to keep the product idea confidential and not share it with anyone not authorized by you; and further agree that they may not use the idea for their own benefit or for the benift of anyone other than you. If anyone who signs this agreement violates it, you could sue them for "breach of contract" for compensation. The critical thing is, they must sign the agreement before you show or tell them anything: if you disclose the product first, you lose the protection of the agreement, because you disclosed it without them agreeng to keep it confidential.
You can probaby find sample or template agreements like this on-line, but would be better off having a lawyer draft one speicically tailored to your needs.
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