The fundamentals of Copyrights – Registration and Duration

Although many types of “creative” and “original” Works are deemed to have copyright protection from the instant that the Work created and “fixed in any tangible place”, in order for the owner within the Online Copyright Registration Symbol to receive greater rights and increase or perhaps her ability to protect those rights the Work should be registered.

The United States Copyright Office is a division of the United States Department of Commerce. Registering with this office will greatly enhance the copyright owner’s ability to seek various types of damages if the copyright has been infringed upon by the outside party. One should seek legal advice before trying to get registering a copyrighted Work, as it should be determined whether the Job is copyrightable, i.e. the kind of Work for which a registration can be obtained. Simply applying to register a copyright does not necessarily mean the work in question is copyrightable.

The duration of copyrights varies from what type of labor is in question as well as when it is created or registered. A piece that was created on or after January 1, 1978 is protected for this time it is created, usually for that author’s life plus 70 years system author’s death. For “a joint work prepared by a couple of authors who does not work for hire,” the term created for 70 years to learn death of last surviving author.

The copyright term for works created and published or registered before January 1, 1978 is the same as for those created on or after January 1, 1978, namely, lifetime of the author plus 70 years. The 95/120-year terms for works for hire apply to pre January 1, 1978 to these works also. However, the term of copyright of these works cannot expire before December 31, 2002. For works published on or before December 31, 2002, the term will not expire before December 31, 2047.

A “work planned for hire” is one prepared by the employee within the scope of his or her employment probably a work specially ordered or commissioned for certain types of use use such to be a contribution to a collective work, a necessary part of a film or other audiovisual work, a translation, a supplementary work, a compilation or perhaps an instructional text if your parties agree in making instrument that function will be considered a work designed for hire.

The copyright term for works ready hire and anonymous and pseudonymous works (unless the author’s identity is revealed in Copyright Office records) is either 95 years via the date of publication or 120 years from the date of creation, whichever is shorter.

As with other areas of Copyright and Intellectual Property Law, it is best to consult with a legal professional that specializes in this field. A number of law schools offer what is known as a Masters of Intellectual Property degree and the advice of an attorney with this involving scholarship can be essential from the minute a work created from all the way through the enforcement or recovery of any infringement.

This article is intended for informational purposes only. It need not be construed as legal advice and readers are motivated to consult a qualified attorney regarding these tips.