Have been making a product for a customer that owns the patent on the finished good.

They have not been paying their bills and may go into bankruptcy.

Can I sell the completed product that is in stock as well as continue the final fabrication of components that are in inventory into finished goods to recoup my losses?

  • 1
    That question should be made on Law SE , are you sure they own the patent as a company ? Or is a person the owner ?
    – YOGO
    Commented Dec 1, 2020 at 20:21
  • 1
    I definitely think you need to move this to Law SE site as it is asking for a legal opinion. You'll need to add more information such as what country you're in to get a useful answer.
    – Eric S
    Commented Dec 1, 2020 at 21:35

1 Answer 1


If you do without a license, you may be infringing. If you are sued for patent infringement they may be able to recoup damages. You can also sue them for not paying you to potentially recoup your damages for not being paid under your employment contract.

If you agree with them to sell the finished product in consideration for them not paying you your fee, then you may be able to do it without infringing as you would have essentially a license.

If they cannot pay you and you are owed money, you are a Creditor. If the firm owns the patent and it goes into bankruptcy, you may be able to gain ownership of that patent. There are many iterations and you need to understand more of the facts.

For example, if the IP is held by the actual person, it depends who owed you money and who can't pay (entity or person) - personal bankruptcy or limited liability co. bankruptcy and which owns the patent. For further example, if contract was with a limited liability company that does not own the patent, you may be out of luck - but it depends if your employment contract also held the person responsible as well to pay your fees. etc.

  • probably a supplier/manufacturer not an employee.
    – George White
    Commented Dec 26, 2020 at 22:29

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