What’s a copyright ? The Basics About Copyright Registration


What is Copyright?

Copyright is the legal right, exclusively given to the originator or an assignee to a print, film, drama, publish, musical material, perform, or record literary, artistic and to authorize others to do the same. However, copyright law doesn’t provide any protection for ideas, facts, systems, methods of operation.

Why do you need a Copyright?

Copyright protects the copyright owner or their work legally so that no one can claim it as their own and you can have a legal documentation from an official Government source and produce it in case when required for legal claim, or the plagiarism.

Copyright Registration

Registering a Copyright is completely different from getting a Copyright approval. You must complete the registration within 3 months of publishing your work makes it easier to sue or recover money from the infringer. Timely registration will ensure that your copyright is valid and allows you to recover $150,000 without having to prove any other harm.

Where can it be registered

In US, US Copyright Office accepts registrations. If a US citizen creates the work and tries to register, he will have to register before the infringement is filed in a US court. Unless your work was registered prior to infringement or within 3 months of publication, you cannot claim any copyright damages or lawyer fees.

Advantages of Registration

• Establish a public record so that no one can claim your work as theirs

• Copyright owner can claim statutory damages and attorney fees if the work was published

3 months before the registration process or prior to the infringement. However, publishing your original work is not mandatory in order to file a copyright registration request.

• Allows the copyright owner to record the registration with US Customs service for importing any infringement copies.


Registration process

• File a registration form (for example, Form TX for literary work/ Form VA for visual work) by depositing a couple of samples of your work with the US Copyright office. You can also use electronic copyright office(eCO) online service for registering claims to copyright.

• Pay a NON-refundable fee of $35 for each unique work. You can do a group registration if you are trying to register several similar works.

• Include a copyright notice(©) along with the work you are submitting though it is not mandatory but it is a way of protecting your work from the infringer in case he claims that it was his work UN-ware of whether it was copyrighted or not. A notice will serve as a track point for the infringer to request your permission to use the copyright owner’s work.

• Once the copyright is registered upon submitting and verifying the form, fees and the supporting documents, the copyright owner will get a registration certificate including a registration number is issued to the copyright owner.

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