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Experienced Copyright Attorneys

Copyright Registration Assistance | Copyright Protection Strategies

Federal registration enhances and protects your rights. Use of an intellectual property (IP) attorney assures registration will be done correctly.

“In order to protect yourself from IP theft, it’s important to know the basics about your rights. For writers, editors and publishers, this means taking a look at the basics of copyright: what it is, what it protects, and how to secure it. With this information in hand, you should be well prepared to defend yourself and your original works from the threat of IP theft.” – A statement from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

What Is A Copyright?

Copyright is a form of intellectual property applicable to certain forms of creative work. Copyright is a legal right that grants the author of an original work exclusive rights for its use and distribution. These rights include reproduction, control over derivative works, distribution, public performance, and “moral rights” such as attribution.

What Can Be Protected By Copyright?

Any medium, such as paper, canvas, concrete, magnetic storage, computer storage, DVDs, etc.

Copyrightable works include the following categories:

  • Literary works
  • Musical works, including any accompanying words
  • Dramatic works, including any accompanying music
  • Pantomimes and choreographic works
  • Pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works
  • Motion pictures and other audiovisual works
  • Sound recordings
  • Architectural works

These categories are viewed broadly. For example, computer programs and most compilations may be registered as literary works; maps and architectural plans may be registered as pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works.

How Do I Show Something Is Protected By Copyright?

The notice for visually perceptible copies should contain all of the following three elements:

  • The symbol © (the letter C in a circle), or the word “Copyright,” or the abbreviation “Copr.”
  • The year of first publication of the work*
  • The name of the owner of the copyright in the work, or an abbreviation by which the name can be recognized.

Example: © 2011 Company, LLC

* The year may be omitted where a pictorial, graphic, or sculptural work – with accompanying textual matter if any – is reproduced on greeting cards, postcards, stationery, jewelry, dolls, toys, or any useful article.

What Are The Advantages Of Copyright Registration?

Registration establishes a public record of the copyright claim. Registration is necessary before an infringement suit may be filed in court for damages. It establishes prima facie evidence in court of the validity of the copyright and of the facts stated in the certificate if registered within five years of publication.

Statutory damages and attorney’s fees are available to the copyright owner in court actions if work is registered within three months of publication or prior to any infringement. Otherwise, only an award of actual damages and profits is available to the copyright owner. Registration enables the recording of the registration with the U.S. Customs Service to protect against importation of infringing copies.

Hunt Pennington Kumar PLLC: An Accomplished Intellectual Property Firm

Whether the creative work you produce is a book, work of art, or design of a building, it should be protected. Others should not be able to copy or otherwise exploit your creativity without your consent.

Proper marking along with registration allows for enforcement so that others don’t pass your creativity off as their own and steal what should be rightfully yours. Hunt Pennington Kumar PLLC will help you handcraft and implement a copyright protection strategy that is customized to your unique combination of needs and goals, call us today.