Specialists in Information Technology and Digital Media
Making the complex simple for IT and Digital businesses
Information technology (IT) and digital media encompass an enormous range of different activities and business sectors. IT lawyers need a deep understanding of the contractual structures underpinning the various routes to market; the intellectual property rights in existence and those likely to be created; the data protection framework, and many other issues.
Most important of all, you need IT solicitors with long experience of advising in this sector: lawyers who can identify the issues, and provide solutions, based on their experience of dealing with these things before; lawyers who can help you to avoid the pitfalls you were aware of, and those you didn’t know even existed.
LCF Law's Commercial & Digital team have the experience to cut through the noise and the irrelevant points to focus on what is important for you - maximising revenue, limiting commercial risk, and protecting intellectual assets.
Who do we advise and what do we do for them?
We work with businesses and entrepreneurs, from start-ups to large companies, many of whom have been clients of the firm for many years, including those involved in the following:
- Software, application and web development: we regularly advise software and app developers, and web designers. Whereas software development was once dominated by ‘waterfall’ processes, the lack of flexibility and the frequency of unsuccessful outcomes has prompted a large scale change to ‘agile’ development techniques - addressing changes as the project moves along and providing more positive outcomes for clients and more certainty for providers. We have successfully advised clients as they have changed their business models and ways of working; but the clarity of our advice has always stayed the same.
- Ecommerce: we advise ecommerce businesses and the providers of technology solutions to ecommerce businesses. We have a deep understanding of the issues faced by online sellers - who rely on our knowledge and expertise around the regulatory framework of selling to consumers - and around the protection and marketing of brands, trade marks and domain names, which are crucial to on-line visibility.
- IT infrastructure: as changing law and practice on re-selling of software licences has increasingly moved licensing models into the cloud, so we receive regular instructions on all aspects of cloud computing: from software-as-a-service (SaaS) subscription models; via disaster recovery/business continuity providers; to hosting, infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) and desktop-as-a-service (DaaS) businesses.
As a full-service law firm we can provide a cradle-to-grave service for our technology clients - often working in conjunction with our Disputes and Corporate teams - as well as bringing in expertise from our trusted international network where necessary.
Some of the key IT and digital media issues
Whether you require standard contract terms or a new suite of contracts with which to take your product or service to market, or you want help with understanding and negotiating agreements with blue-chip customers - we’ve been there before and can help you. The contracts we prepare are robust and stand the test of time; clients have been using our agreements successfully for many years. Key issues for an information technology or digital media services provider often include:
- What are the deliverables, and what are the dependencies on your client that may prevent you from delivering them?
- What are the acceptance criteria and how are they determined? What is the acceptance testing process and the consequences of acceptance test failure?
- What are the charges and when are they payable? What leverage do you have against non-payment?
- Is there a service level agreement? If so, what are the service levels and what are the consequences of non-compliance? What is the service credit regime?
- What pre-existing intellectual property rights are required to perform the service and what rights does the customer get over them (if any)?
- What intellectual property rights are likely to be created and who owns them?
- In what circumstances can the customer terminate?
- Are there limits of liability and are they appropriate?
- What indemnities is the provider obliged to give?
- What are the requirements around benchmarking and exit assistance?
Routes to market
We work with information technology businesses to help them secure different routes to market, whether by licensing, reseller or referrer arrangements or other distribution channels. We work with clients to develop new ways of exploiting content on digital media.
Most technology businesses have at least some key intellectual property (IP) at their core. Your technology lawyer needs a deep understanding of the intellectual property rights that may apply, how they can be protected and how they can be exploited. Whilst copyright is often key to software businesses, and trade mark protection for branding is vital for most businesses, patents, confidential information / trade secrets, database rights and designs can all be highly relevant. We are recognised as a leading firm in this area and we have the depth of knowledge and experience to protect your interests in this very important area.
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), as implemented in the UK by the Data Protection Act 2018, has made data protection more important, and more complex, than ever before. Failure to comply leaves you exposed to fines of up to £17.5 million or 4% of worldwide annual turnover as well as reputational damage and the risk of being sued directly by individuals. You cannot afford to take the risk of non-compliance or bad advice.
Highly-experienced technology lawyers
Our specialist technology solicitors have decades of experience and deep learning. We have advised businesses of all shapes and sizes. Our success is inextricably linked with the success of our clients. That is why they stay with us for many years and say things like this about us:
"James Sarjantson impressively grasps the problem at hand with record speed, delivering exceptional counsel balanced with an insightful commercial perspective. It’s no coincidence we have consistently reverted to James for his advice and viewpoints across a vast range of often challenging and always unusual legal issues since 2016."
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Our solicitors are ready to help you. Click on Contact Us, use the Contact form above, or send a message direct to one of the team working in this area from their business cards below.