After you completed a software development project, very often you’ll discover that there are issues that remain unresolved, whether you’re the developer or the client who retained the developer for this project. That’s because software development agreements often have holes in them.
Here are some common app issues that need to be addressed, ideally within the software development agreement, so that you can avoid misunderstandings and even lawsuits after the project is completed.
Intellectual Property Ownership
First, who owns the application’s intellectual property?
Did the developer borrow code, such as open-source code or public domain code, and incorporate it into the project?
Was other third-party code licensed and used within the project?
Your software development contract should clearly identify what’s being used and who owns what.
Protect yourself as app developer or client so that there are no mistakes and misunderstandings.
What about software support after development?
Is the developer obligated to provide any support whatsoever? If not, who will provide the support when it’s needed?
Who maintains the software after the project is over? Will the developer do it or a third party?
Is it included in the development contract? And if it is, will the application developer be paid an additional fee (e.g. on an ongoing basis) in order to maintain the software application?
Software Development Agreements and Upgrades
At some point, the software that’s been developed will need to be upgraded to future versions, perhaps with even additional features and bugs fixed.
Is that included within the software development agreement? Is it even addressed?
Is there any duty whatsoever for the developer to come back, perhaps for a certain amount of money, in order to make upgrades?
If so, for what period of time is the developer obligated? 90 days? Six months? One year?
If you don’t know the answers to these questions and they’ve not been answered within your software development agreement, it’s time to sit down with the other party after speaking with an experienced software lawyer and iron out these issues with a supplemental agreement.