Article L.611-7-1 of the Intellectual Property Code (IPC) introduced by the December 15, 2021 ordinance finally clarifies the attribution of the invention developed by a trainee.
Indeed, until now, in the absence of a specific clause in the internship agreement or any other agreement concluded with the host company, the rights related to the invention were attributed to the intern inventor. Such a provision, in direct application of article L.611-6 of the IPC, did not take into account the investments in time and energy made by the company in the hosting and supervision of the trainee, which necessarily participated in the development of the invention.
This new article thus allows, according to provisions similar to those of article L.611-7 of the IPC, to align the regime of trainee inventors with that of employee inventors. Since the publication of this ordinance, the invention is therefore:
- directly attributed to the host company when it is a mission invention and,
- attributed to the host company, at its request, when it is an invention outside the attributable mission.
In the case of a non-assignable invention, the trainee retains full ownership.
Of course, such awards require, as for employee inventions, the payment of a financial compensation in the case of an attributable mission invention, and of a fair price in the case of a non-attributable invention.