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I previously was the lead developer in a software project. They have contacted me and attempted to trick me into signing a patent assignment. It says "in consideration of good and valuable consideration, the receipt of which is hereby acknowledged, the undersigned hereby sell, assign, and transfer.."

So before signing it I asked them for this consideration. They said that refers to my previous compensation. Well, I am pretty doubtful of that.. how could I have sold those rights so far in advance?

One of the people listed as an "inventor" on the patent is quite wealthy and has a very high profile job. What actions can I take that will enable me to receive "monetary consideration" for signing this patent assignment form? If I cannot receive this, how can I block or protest or interfere with this patent?

It says US application number 14/272,114 and attorney docket no 16170/1. Can't figure out how to find that in the patent database, searching for those numbers doesn't show it.

Just to be clear, I was the original creator of this software on a freelance basis, and more than half of the elements referred to in the drawings are actually features that I architected or implemented.

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I believe it would come down to what your employment contract says -- if it states that all the work you perform as part of your job (or some similar words), then both morally and legally would you need to assign the patent to your employer. The other thing to ask yourself -- what would you gain (making life difficult for others is not a "gain") by NOT signing it? Do you expect to use the invention somewhere else, or somehow benefit from it in other ways? If no, then the best you could do was to suggest that you were to get a bonus if the patent were to be sold or licensed to somebody else. –  Soren Aug 16 at 1:02
    
Why is it a trick for someone who paid you to develop/invent something to want to be sure they have title to what you developed/invented for them? –  George White Aug 16 at 4:55
    
@GeorgeWhite the wording of the request to sign the forms was a trick because they purposely didn't mention the assignment which was at the back of the document and stated the only reason for my signing the forms was my own benefit (which there actually is none). –  Jason Livesay Aug 16 at 7:32
    
@Soren correct answer, I had a contract (not as an employee) which assigned the IP rights to the other party. I had forgotten about that and was also unsure because of the wording of the assignment mentioning selling specifically those rights which was not the same as the more general descriptions in the contract. Maybe you can submit your comment as an answer. The biggest problem I have with this whole thing is that as soon as the system became viable and some sales were made, I was completely cut out, which may be technically legal but is very unfair. –  Jason Livesay Aug 16 at 7:35
    
It is actually not unfair -- it is what you signed up for by being a contractor. If a farmer hires workers help to plant apple trees on a field, he pays them by the days they are working doing the planting -- it would be pretty strange if the workers came back after a few year when the farmer started selling the apples, claiming that they should share the profit as without them there would be no apples to sell -- contracting is exactly that, you get paid for the time you work and the rights of the produce falls to the one who paid for the work -- unless the contract says otherwise. –  Soren Aug 16 at 15:21

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I believe it would come down to what your employment contract says -- if it states that all the work you perform as part of your job (or some similar words), then both morally and legally would you need to assign the patent to your employer. The other thing to ask yourself -- what would you gain (making life difficult for others is not a "gain") by NOT signing it? Do you expect to use the invention somewhere else, or somehow benefit from it in other ways? If no, then the best you could do was to suggest that you were to get a bonus if the patent were to be sold or licensed to somebody else.

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