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Patents - Can the Federal Government Take Ownership of Patents developed from SBIR?

Under the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program, small businesses that receive federal funding for research and development are generally allowed to retain ownership of the patents that result from their work. However, there are some circumstances under which the federal government may be entitled to take ownership of these patents.

One such circumstance is if the small business fails to meet the requirements of the SBIR program. For example, if a small business does not use the funds it received for the purposes specified in the grant agreement or fails to submit required reports, the government may be entitled to take ownership of any resulting patents. For more information check out our post - SBIR and iEdison Reporting - Let's talk compliance.

Another circumstance under which the government may be entitled to take ownership of patents is if there are national security concerns involved. For example, if the research involves sensitive military technologies or other national security-related research, the government may have the right to take ownership of the resulting patents.

It's also worth noting that the Bayh-Dole Act, which governs intellectual property rights for federally funded research, includes provisions that allow the government to take ownership of patents under certain circumstances. However, this is generally considered to be a last resort, and the government typically prefers to allow small businesses to retain ownership of their intellectual property whenever possible.

Not sure how to retain ownership of inventions created using SBIR funding - Contact Us.


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