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Suppose you are just getting to bed. All the day’s activities and tomorrow’s plans have finally managed to settle down to the point where you are almost able to fall asleep. Then it suddenly hits you: The single greatest idea since sliced bread. You get that flash of inspiration you know will turn your life on its ear and revolutionise the world! Congratulations!

… But now what? If your idea is half as great as you think it could be, how can you talk about it to someone and be sure they are not going to steal it for themselves? The answer is simple: you need a Confidentiality Agreement .

  • WHAT IS A MUTUAL CONFIDENTIALITY AGREEMENT? Put simply, a Confidentiality Agreement is a written contract stating the people you talk to will not be able to take your idea and use it for themselves. Every ideas have value, and your ideas are no different. A Confidentiality Agreement allows you to talk about your idea safely. A Mutual Confidentiality Agreement , put simply, is a agreement binding both parties, and only these parties, privy to the existance of an idea or concept.
  • WHEN SHOULD I USE A CONFIDENTIALITY AGREEMENT? Since you can’t patent or copyright an idea, you need to be sure your ideas are protected. The best way to do this is with a Confidentiality Agreement. Whenever you have an idea you believe is valuable and you want to talk about it to another party, you need a Confidentiality Agreement
  • HOW DO I ENTER INTO A CONFIDENTIALITY AGREEMENT? Whenever you plan to talk about your idea with someone, you should have them read and sign a Confidentiality Agreement. For example, let’s say you have come up with a great invention but you are not sure how to go about making it. If you go talk to an adviser to ask them what your next step should be, you need to make sure that adviser will sign a Confidentiality Agreement. If they won’t, it’s best that you move on and do NOT reveal your idea.
  • WHAT DO I NEED TO INCLUDE IN THE AGREEMENT? The agreement needs several clauses and conditions for it to be effective. First, you need to make clear what the person you talk to can and can’t reveal. The parties need to know the information discussed is confidential, and that by revealing or using it, they will violate the contract and be open to whatever penalties are applicable. A good Confidentiality agreement will be precise enough to protect your ideas while being flexible enough to allow you the freedom you need to fulfill them.
  • CAN’T I JUST MAKE AN ORAL AGREEMENT? Of course. But making an oral agreement and enforcing it are two different stories. Oral agreements are all too often little more than paper tigers. A written agreement is the best way to protect yourself and the lucrative potential of your idea(s).

Coming up with a great idea or invention is just the first step. To be sure your idea is practical, you need to research, and research means talking to the right people. No matter if its an idea for a movie script, a new recipe or a better mouse-trap, your idea needs protection. There is nothing worse than coming up with a brilliant idea, only to see someone else reap the rewards because you didn’t take your own idea seriously. Ideas are big business. Even if it seems silly or slightly paranoid, you owe it to yourself to give your ideas the respect they deserve, so that the credit for them is yours, as it rightuflly is. If you decide to selling your idea or rights to it or some such, refer to the Assignment of Intellectual Property Rights .

The following agreements are available for immediate download