Technology Law

“Technology Law” covers a huge area, overlapping with our other areas of practice, particularly commercial law and intellectual property. The key to our expertise here is our team’s experience of technology and knowledge based industries. Adrian Phillips’s experience encompasses biotechnology and media companies, Andrew Katz has been a Board Director of the Telecommunications Industry Association and has a science and technology background, having formerly worked as an IT consultant.

Channel to Market

We advise on the structure and documentation for all channels to market, both domestically and internationally (usually with the involvement of a specialist law firm in the appropriate jurisdiction). We have worked with many like-minded law firms in most major jurisdictions throughout the world, and are happy to give recommendations.

The main examples are:

  • OEM
  • VAR
  • Distribution
  • Joint venture
  • Agency
  • ASP

We also handle complex joint venture, franchise and licensing structures.

Lifescience, Biotech and Pharma

We act for a number of lifescience, biotech and pharmaceutical companies from Global 1000s to bioscience startups, and our experience encompasses:

  • Licensing in and licensing out
  • Technology Transfer (licensing and option agreements covering patents and knowhow)
  • Pharmaceutical distribution
  • Pharmaceutical marketing
  • IP protection
  • European and UK competition law (grey imports etc.)

Software and Hardware Contracts

  • Open source licensing
  • Software licensing and distribution
  • Software development agreements
  • Software transfer/assignment
  • OEM and VAR agreements
  • Turn-key agreements
  • Hardware sale agreements
  • Lease and finance agreements
  • ASP/Bureau Agreements
  • Duplication
  • IPR protection

New Media

Moorcrofts LLP has a number of new media clients, and we are familiar with both the technologies involved (mpeg, jpeg, MP3, Div-X etc.) as well as the law in this area.

  • Format transfer (e.g. digitisation)
  • Data Security
  • Linking/embedding/asp agreements

E-Commerce

  • B2B
  • B2C
  • C2C
  • Web-selling

Service Level Agreements

Service level agreements are agreements between a supplier and customer, where the supplier agrees to perform to certain criteria. Failure to reach those criteria leads to penalties, whereas over-performance may lead to enhanced payment.

Service level agreements have a number of advantages over traditional “breach it and sue” contracts:

  • Provide both positive and negative incentives for the supplier to perform
  • Provides an aspect of risk-sharing between the parties to the venture (i.e. the supplier also takes some of the risk of failure to perform, and usually obtains a share of the benefits of over-performing)
  • Makes the supplier a “stakeholder” in the customer’s business
  • Enables the customer to extract sanctions from the supplier without going through legal process
  • Allows a more structured effective management of the contract relationship than “break it and we’ll sue”
  • Makes it easier for the relationship to continue after the supplier has under-performed.

Legal remedies for breach of contract are very blunt instruments. Usually, the customer’s remedies are either “we’ll sue you for damages” or the radically different “we’ll terminate the contract, and then sue you for damages”. Service level agreements allow a much more finely graded array of options where the contractor fails to perform (and incentives for them to meet, and exceed, performance criteria).

Regulatory

Information/data protection and privacy are becoming increasingly important issues. In practice, virtually every business is required to notify under the Data Protection Act 1998. As part of this process, you also have to notify the Commissioner of your security policy and procedures. We can assist with the security aspects of notification, in addition to the procedures and reviews necessary to ensure that your business complies generally.

  • Information Protection (data protection)
  • Security policy
  • Internet and email use policy
  • Privacy
  • US data import/export, including developments around Privacy Shield
  • Multi-tier processor and cloud arrangements, including pseudonymisation

We have given specialist data protection advice in the market segments area of:

  • Direct marketing and database broking
  • Television and video production and broadcasting
  • Healthcare
  • Financial Services

Specialist B2C Business Advice

We have many clients who work on consumer facing products. We have specialist knowledge in the following sectors:

  • Direct selling
  • Direct response
  • Lotteries and promotions
  • Consumer Credit law

For more information, contact Andrew Katz