Creating a mobile app for your business is a fantastic way to get into a new market and promote your business in a new and exciting way. Once you have a design in mind and have thought about what you want your app to do, you then need to think about the legal issues involved to make sure you comply with any laws and regulations.

What laws will apply?

Different laws apply when developing a mobile app and whether all of these areas of law will apply depends, of course, on the type of app you are creating. These are intellectual property, privacy, spam, consumer laws, and online codes of practice and classification of games. We have created a list below of general things to consider when developing a mobile app.  

Terms and Conditions

When you develop your app, you will need to consider whether you can meet the Terms and Conditions of the software application that will utilize your app. Examples include Apple iOS and Google Android. You will also need to create your own terms and conditions that you will automatically enter into with everyone who uses your app. It will detail how your app should be used and what users are not allowed to do with your app.

Confidentiality

Creating a confidentiality agreement for your business and anyone you deal with in regards to your app is critical to protecting your ideas. These types of agreements are also called non-disclosure agreements. If you can get third parties to sign an agreement, you can make sure your ideas are protected, and it will give you the ability to challenge anyone who has tried to steal your ideas from you. Equally as important is making sure that you have inadvertently not copied someone else’s idea and that your app is not already in existence in some form or another.

Privacy

Most apps involve collecting personal information of users in some way, especially if you are using it to promote a business. Personal information taken from apps can include things like photos, addresses, birthdays and credit card details. Your privacy policy will need to be included in the development of your app and will need to comply with Australian privacy laws.

Intellectual Property

When creating your app, you will be coming up with your own designs, graphics, names and code. You will need to register these as trademarks, copyright or patents depending on what type of intellectual property your app attracts. If you are having someone else help you with developing your app, you will need an agreement with them to make sure you retain the intellectual property rights associated with your app.

Keeping accurate records of all stages of development of your app, any permissions you need from third parties and contracts you have with external sources is essential to protect your IP. 

Conclusion

Developing a mobile app comes with many challenges as it interacts with many different areas of law. It can be confronting navigating these challenges alone so it is helpful when a specialist lawyer can step you through these. 

LegalVision’s business lawyers can help you with making sure your mobile app meets all of the necessary requirements. Please call us on 1300 544 755 and talk to us about how we can best help you!

Bianca Reynolds

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