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US Copyright Registration Guide

Updated:2018-7-12 12:24:20    Source:www.tannet-group.comViews:15

US copyright registration is filed with US Copyright Office, which is the official U.S. government body that maintains records of copyright registration in the United States. Copyright, a form of intellectual property law, protects original works of authorship including literary, dramatic, musical, and artistic works, such as poetry, novels, movies, songs, computer software, and architecture. The purpose of copyright registration is to place on record a verifiable account of the date and content of the work in question, so that in the event of a legal claim, or case of infringement.

Copyright protects original works of authorship, while a patent protects inventions or discoveries. Ideas and discoveries are not protected by the copyright law, although the way in which they are expressed may be. A trademark protects words, phrases, symbols, or designs identifying the source of the goods or services of one party and distinguishing them from those of others. Before file the application, you need to understand the difference between copyright, patent and trademark in order to seek the best protection for your work.

Types of Works Eligible for Registration
Examples of copyrightable works include
(1) Literary works;
(2) Musical works, including any accompanying words;
(3) Dramatic works, including any accompanying music;
(4) Pantomimes and choreographic works;
(5) Pictorial, graphic, and sculptural works;
(6) Motion pictures and other audiovisual works;
(7) Sound recordings, which are works that result from the fixation of a series of musical, spoken, or other sounds;
(8) Architectural works.

Who Can Register Copyright in the United States?
Any work that is protected by U.S. copyright law can be registered. This includes many works of foreign origin. All works that are unpublished, regardless of the nationality of the author, are protected in the United States. Works that are first published in the United States or in a country with which we have a copyright treaty or that are created by a citizen or domiciliary of a country with which we have a copyright treaty are also protected and may therefore be registered with the U.S. Copyright Office.

Time-frame for Registration
The time the Copyright Office requires to process an application varies, depending on the number of applications the Office is receiving and clearing at the time of submission and the extent of questions associated with the application.

Term of Protection and Renewal
In general, for works created on or after January 1, 1978, the term of copyright is the life of the
author plus seventy years after the author’s death. If the work is a joint work with multiple authors, the term lasts for seventy years after the last surviving author’s death. For works made for hire and anonymous or pseudonymous works, the duration of copyright is 95 years from publication or 120 years from creation, whichever is shorter.

Copyright renewal is a process through which an initial term of copyright protection for a work can be extended for a second term. Once the term of copyright protection has ended, the copyrighted work enters the public domain, and can be freely reproduced and incorporated into new works.

Benefits of Registration
In addition to establishing a public record of a copyright claim, registration offers several other statutory advantages:
(1) Before an infringement suit may be filed in court, registration (or refusal) is necessary for works of U.S. origin.
(2) Registration establishes prima facie evidence of the validity of the copyright and facts stated in the certificate when registration is made before or within five years of publication.
(3) When registration is made prior to infringement or within three months after publication of a work, a copyright owner is eligible for statutory damages, attorneys’ fees, and costs.
(4) Registration permits a copyright owner to establish a record with the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) for protection against the importation of infringing copies.

Contact Us
If you have further queries, don’t hesitate to contact Tannet anytime, anywhere by simply visiting Tannet’s website www.tannet-group.net, or calling Hong Kong hotline at 852-27826888 or China hotline at 86-755-82143512 or 86-755-82143181 or emailing to tannet-solution@hotmail.com. You are also welcome to visit our office situated in 16/F, Taiyangdao Bldg 2020, Dongmen Rd South, Luohu, Shenzhen, China.

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