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Do I own any rights to a spreadsheet I created for my job?

By Jym396 ·
I wrote a spreadsheet in Excel 2010 and the company now wants to own it. Do I have any rights to this? And if they want to buy me out, what would be a fair price?

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Did you write it on your time and on your personal computer?

by CharlieSpencer In reply to Do I own any rights to a ...

Unless you have a contract that specifies otherwise, work done for the company on company time using company resources is usually the company's property.

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Yes they have an interest, but it doesn't always belong to them now due

by Deadly Ernest In reply to Did you write it on your ...

to changes in employment and IP laws over the last four decades. That's why I suggest checking the local laws.

The oddity comes in when someone does something like this that's NOT part of their designated work. A common example is an accounting person who creates a spreadsheet to help them with their work, creating spreadsheets is not their employed purpose, so it doesn't automatically belong to the employer. Mind you, if you're specifically employed to create stuff like this, then it's a totally different situation as the company employs you to do it.

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This is a mixed bag and a lot depends on the laws of your state

by Deadly Ernest In reply to Do I own any rights to a ...

First, the basic law now is you own the copyright.
Second, because you did it for work and worked on it at work they have an invested interest in it.
Third, your type of employment will have a bearing on who owns what, as do the state employment laws.

If they're offering to buy it, the easiest thing would be to make a deal where you continue to own the copyright and you sell it to them outright while retaining the right to use it yourself. That saves a lot of legal discussion about who owns what. Base the charge on how big it is and how many hours it took to create; use your current hourly charge rate.

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Thank you guys.

by Jym396 In reply to Do I own any rights to a ...

Great insight and info.

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