Sunday, January 18, 2009

Registering For a Copyright

To register for a copyright you have to send two copies of the work to be registered along with the fees and the registration forms. Seems simple enough, but if everything is not included in the submission then it will most probably be returned. Two copies are required if the work was published or written in the United States, if the work was written outside of the country then one copy is sufficient.

If a published work is received without the form or fee it will be placed in the Library of Congress. Thus eventually if registration is required then you would have to send additional copies along with the fees and application form, as the original has already gone to the Library of Congress and thus is not available to the authorities issuing the registration. For renewal registration of an existing copyright, you will have to send the application form duly completed and the RE addendum if required plus the application and renewal fee. If everything is not received together, the application will be rejected.

There is a requirement on how to fill the forms too. Forms will only be considered if they are filled out in black ink. If the form is a photocopy then it should adhere to certain conditions which are that the forms should be legible and made on 8V* 11" good grade white paper compliant to an automatic feeder tray of a photocopier. The form has to be head to head, which means that the top of one side should match the top of another. If your forms do not meet these requirements there may be a delay in your registration resulting from the return of the forms to you.

If a work has a history of infringements then pre registration is a requirement. Preregistration however does not take place in lieu of registration; it is in addition to it. To make the list for preregistration the work must be in the process of completion for commercial distribution. It must be determined by the register of copyright to be on a list of infringing works prior to commercial distribution.

Binny Satin

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