If you are having creative work made for you then are you making sure to get an independent contractor agreement? An independent contractor agreement will protect you from a lot of potential hassle that can come up. It is designed to protect the IC and the client alike. You need to be protected regarding use of the work you receive. The independent contractor needs to be protected from dealing with a potentially dishonest client.
If you are a client hiring an independent contractor, why would it be a good idea to get an independent contractor agreement drawn up?
When you hire an independent contractor you want to know that they are going to perform the work you are hiring them for. An independent contractor agreement ensures that an independent contractor fulfills his or her basic promise to perform. Also, whenever you hire out someone to perform certain types of work for you, such creative work, you need to be sure that you will own the work.
What this means is the person who is creating it will not be able to use it whatsoever after they have transferred it over to you. Without a written independent contractor agreement there is no guarantee of this.
Is there a difference when it comes to intellectual property if I hire an independent contractor versus having one as a full time employee?
If you were to hire someone to perform certain creative work for you full time, then whatever creative works that person created for you would belong to you automatically. The law states that any type of work prepared while under regular employment are automatically classified as “work made for hire”. This is according to the U.S Copyright Act. The problem is the same rule does not apply for any work that is created for you by an independent contractor.
Independent Contractor Agreement – What does it take for work created by an independent contractor to be considered “for hire” ?
In order for the work that you get created by an independent contractor to be labeled “for hire”, there must be a written independent contractor agreement in place at the time the work starts and while it is being created.
In this agreement must be all of the rules and provisions you want the independent contractor to abide by. If something is not stated in the contract, then you will not be able to enforce it after the work has been created.
In the world of “work for hire” it is very important for all parties concerned to be protected. This ensures everyone gets what they want and that everyone can continue to operate their businesses without fear. Everyone must be clear though, and in some cases they are not.
In the next installment of this article I am going to discuss the important of an independent contractor agreement a little bit more. It is important that you get the full scope of what I am trying to say.