If you created it, you own it or so it would seem.
Intellectual property rights are relatively new and can be a challenge, according to the Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog in “Article on Practical Considerations for Valuing Intellectual Property Assets in Estate Planning.”
What this means is that executors, trustees and the lawyers who help them, need to be very careful when dealing with intellectual property rights.
If an estate has a patent, for example, then it needs to be able to determine how much that patent is worth for estate tax purposes and it needs to know if the patent is co-owned with other people who could have a say in how it is used.
The estate must also take affirmative steps to protect the intellectual property rights, when necessary to do so.
Because these assets can be so valuable, it is very important for estates to seek out professional advice on how to handle them.
An estate planning attorney can guide you in creating an estate plan that meets your unique circumstances.