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Dimitry K., Esq.
Dimitry K., Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 41221
Experience:  Multiple jurisdictions, specialize in business/contract disputes, estate creation and administration.
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Presently I have a for-profit corporation that sells Christian

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Presently I have a for-profit corporation that sells Christian books and DVDs that I have written and developed. I own the copyrights and trademark for these items. I want to form a 501-3c and make all of these items available through the corporation. I do not need info on the basics for starting a 501-3c but rather about my retaining ownership of the intellectual property. I am not expecting to receive any royalties but only a designated salary set by the board of directors. I want to make the books and DVDs exclusively available for sell and be distribution by the 501-3c and all funds go into the corporation. Is there a way to do this. I see many other Christian ministries out there selling books and tapes and I am sure that some of these authors are retaining copyrights. Can I develop some contract or agreement in the corporation.

Thank you for your question. Please permit me to assist you with your concerns.

The only way to retain copyright is for the non-profit to essentially contract with the 'for profit' or with you directly and create a contract where the intellectual property is not fully transferred but is instead licensed to the new non-profit for use. That would allow you to keep the rights (as they would never be transferred to the non-profit) and retain the ability utilize the intellectual property for your needs, Anything else, any sort of a formal transfer into a new non-profit would act as a means of sending the assets to the entity and not to you, which would then deprive you of the rights. Really, a licensing scheme is probably the most ideal in rights retention.

Good luck.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I am not sure if you are getting this... I got a bit confused with the website.

The main thing I am trying to do is remove the conflict of interest when the corporation asks for donations to translate, develop and promote the intellectual property that I am not benefiting from the sell of the same. I want the funds received from donations as well funds that come in from the sell of the intellectual property to all go into the not-for profit and not to me. I will be a salaried person since I will be doing seminars and such for the non-profit. Will what you have suggested accomplish this?

Thank you for your follow-up.

Then I am not quite seeing what you are trying to accomplish. To be clear you want to retain rights to intellectual property while not having a conflict of interest with an entity who will actually be disseminating the intellectual property based on donation. Then if you continue ownership of the intellectual property there will also be a potential conflict of interest. Either transfer your rights to the non-profit outright and then take a salaried position within the entity, or transfer your rights completely to a new 'for-profit' entity, then have that entity contract with the non-profit over licensing the rights. But if you want to keep your rights while working for the entity, that won't be legally possible.

Good luck.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

If I transfer all rights to the non-profit and become a salaried employee and then years later the corporation is dissolved for some reason, who then gets the ownership of the intellectual property?

If you transfer all rights to the non-profit, then creditors if any get the rights to the intellectual property. Otherwise the non-profit prior to dissolution could itself choose to transfer the rights to someone else, be it an individual or a different business entity.

Good luck.

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