If I’m a chef and am hired by a restaurant, how do I protect the ownership rights to my recipes?

My service has been acquired by a prestigious restaurant. I created the entire menu, as well as the recipes for the restaurant. what type of contract should I present to the owner? I want intellectual property rights (creative) but each contract I find leans more towards ownership belonging to said company instead of myself.

Asked on April 22, 2015 under Business Law, Georgia


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

You can only protect your intellectual property while an employee by contract--that is, by some contract with your employer giving you the intellectual property rights to your creations. Otherwise, anything you create for/at work will belong to them--intellectual property created by an employee for or in the course of employment belongs to the employer in the absence of a contract to the contrary. If they won't give you contractual protection, there most likely is nothing you can do to protect yourself.

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