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Research and Development

Many organisations undertake research and development activities to develop ideas, contribute to research and ultimately create new inventions and other intellectual property (IP), with the goal for some of commercialisation.

If research and development is a key aspect of your growing business, you will want to make the most of the tax reliefs and grants available, protect any resulting IP assets and ensure you have the right agreements in place with your research collaborators.  

At Thorntons, we can provide legal advice and support on issues such as collaboration and non-disclosure agreements, services agreements and IP to help you optimise your research and development work.

R&D support

There are various agreements, reliefs and grants that could be relevant to your business research and development.

Collaboration agreements are entered into between a number of organisations who are working together on a specific project. These agreements will clearly set out the scope of the work to be undertaken and the contributions to be made by each party. They also cover a wide variety of rights and obligations including, ownership of IP, confidentiality obligations and liability of the parties.

We can advise on and draw up any collaboration agreement for you. We can also help you to determine who should own the resulting IP from the project and where the IP is capable of commercialisation, can assist with licence agreements or revenue share agreements where appropriate.

Non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) are fundamental to ensure that certain information remains confidential and is not disclosed to the public. Organisations can enter into one-way NDAs whereby only one party is disclosing confidential information to the other, or can enter into mutual NDAs where both/all parties are sharing information with each other.

We can provide tailored advice and practical solutions to ensure that your confidential information remains secret and is not disclosed. 

Certain tax relief is available to organisations who participate in research and development. For more information about the relief available, we have access to a network of financial advisors who would be happy to assist with this.

Many applications for grants include funding terms and conditions or a tender process. These can seem daunting and complex. We can assist in advising on these terms and reviewing documents in relation to a tender process to advise of any risks to your organisation.

How can Thorntons help?

At Thorntons, our specialist Business Law team offer a range of services to support clients’ research and development work, including advice and support on agreements and intellectual property assets. We work closely with our clients to understand their business needs and objectives, delivering tailored and commercially focused advice.

Our wide variety of expertise on research and development ensures that we can help you to protect and commercialise your organisation’s intellectual property.

Call the Thorntons Business Law team on 03330 430350 to find out more about our services for businesses, or complete our enquiry form and we will contact you.