If I purchased and registered a URL with my own money and then my employer paid for the design and build of a site, what is my legal right to the site?

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If I purchased and registered a URL with my own money and then my employer paid for the design and build of a site, what is my legal right to the site?

I purchased a URL with my personal money and my personal account. I then had a company design and built a website, which my former employer paid for. I was recently let go from the company, but they never paid me for the URL or had the URL transferred to their name.

Asked on February 20, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Arizona

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

From what you write:

1) You would own the URL itself, if you purchased it with your own money and your former employer never reimbursed you.

2) The employer would own the intellectual property (e.g. any graphics, designs, text, etc.) which they paid for, as well as the overall website design, the code for the website, etc.

If you imagine the website and its content as a trailer home, and the URL as the property it sits on, you own the property, they own the home.


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