A company can lay claim to the ideas floating around in employees' heads, according to a Texan court judgement.
After a five-year court battle Alcatel has won rights to an idea that had been in the head of one of its former employees.
The company has won a court battle against Evan Brown, who claimed that he - rather than the company - owned rights to a software idea that he asserts had long existed in his head, according to law website law.com.
Brown had signed a contract when he joined Alcatel agreeing to hand over any inventions he made while working for the company. Brown said the software idea he had was never written down and remained in his head until after he left the company.
But the court decided that an idea in your head is no different in law than if you had written it down and stored it in a bank vault.
Alcatel's lawyer said the company was pleased but not surprised that the court had upheld the agreement.
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