Copyrights: Basics And Registration Process

Copyright is the protection of original work of authorship. Once you create an original work and fix it, you are the author and the owner. It is the right to authorize others to exercise exclusive rights subject to statutory limitations. Our experts help to register the copyright of your original work.

Works eligible for copyright protection:

  1. audiovisuals
  2. written works
  3. Visual works
  4. video games
  5. Dramatic works
How Lead India helps in copyright registration?

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Essentially, copyright can be referred to as the right not to copy others’ work. An exclusive right is given to the owner of the copyright for their work. Copyright registration protects the author’s work from being imitated, copied, or reproduced in other forms. In this article individuals who are eligible for copyright, registration have been described along with the categories under which copyright registration is done under the Copyright Act. Further, the process of copyright registration and the benefits of obtaining the registration has been discussed elaborately.

Categories Of Works Available For Copyright Protection

Under the ‘Copyright Act, 1957’ copyrights are protected. However, the most substantial amendment made to the Act was in 2012, thus can be referred to as ‘The Copyright Act 2012’. The Register of Copyrights is categorized into-

  • Original Literary works other than computer programs;
  • Musical works;
  • Artistic works such as books, painting, sculpting
  • Cinematography consists of visual recording
  • Sound Recording
  • Compilations, tables, and Computer Programs.

Requisite Of Documents For Copyright Registration

The following documents are required for obtaining copyright registration.

  • Applicant’s name, address, nationality along with ID Proof
  • If the work is published then and the publisher and applicant are different individuals, then a No Objection Certificate from the publisher.
  • Search Certificate from Trademark office, if any.
  • Vakalatnama or Power of Attorney
  • 2 copies of the work
  • Applicant’s Know Your Customer (KYC) form

Process Of Copyright Registration

Both published and unpublished work can be copyrighted. For registering published work, three copies of published work must be attached with the application for registration. While only a copy of the manuscript is required to be attached along with the application to affix the stamp of the copyright office in case of unpublished work. The affixing of the stamp of the copyright office serves as proof of unpublished work to be registered.

There are several steps for copyright registration. However, some of the basic steps for the registration process in India are given below.

  1. An application for copyright registration can be made by applying through Form IV available on the site in a required manner along with applicable fees. All the details along with the statement of particulars must be provided in the application. Separate works require a separate application for registration.
  2. The application fees for different copyright works can be found here.
  3. The applicant, as well as the advocate, must sign the application form. The advocate must be the one in whose favour vakalatnam or Power of Attorney (POA) has been executed.
  4. A diary number will be issued by the Registrar after paying the required fees. A waiting period of 30 days is given in case any objections are to be raised against the work.
  5. The application is further checked for discrepancies by the scrutinizer if no such objections are received within 30 days of the waiting period. Further, registration of the application is done if no such discrepancies are found. After the registration has been made, an extract of the same is sent to the Registrar for making entry of the registered copyright work in the Register of Copyright.
  6. In case, any objection is raised by another party within the waiting period, a letter concerning the objection. The letter is sent by the examiner to both the parties by giving them an opportunity of hearing.
  7. Finally, on hearing out both the parties, if it is found by the examiner that objections have been resolved, the examiner shall scrutinize the application accordingly and approve or reject the application based on the case.

Advantages Of Copyright Registration

On completion of the registration of the Copyright, the owner of the copyright has the following advantages. The advantages of Copyright registration are interconnected, however, the following key points provide a clear picture of the advantages. 

  1. Creating a Public Record-  a public record is created on glistering the Copyright which shows that the author has exclusive rights over his work. The registration is a sort of declaration to the public that work is protected. Therefore, no one can copy, reproduce the work of the author without their permission. A record for the public is created by copyright registration. 
  2. Power for filing Copyright infringement- If any work of the author is copied or reproduced without his acknowledgment then there will copyright infringement. The author has the right to file a lawsuit against such infringement in a court of law. Without having Copyright registration, the author cannot proceed to file infringement of the Copyright.If the registration of Copyright has been done prior to the infringement or within 3 months of publication of the work, then the applicant is entitled to any legal, or statutory damages incurring. However, if infringement occurs prior to the effective date of the registration of Copyright or after 3 months of registration, then the applicant is not entitled to the costs or any statutory damages. 
  3. Useful as legal proof- A certificate of registration of Copyright is obtained which helps the owner of the copyright in case of any disputes in the work. The certificate serves as legal proof of ownership of the Copyright by reducing the legal burden. The certificate provides the owner a statutory authority over his work in case of any dispute. 
  4. Damages- As mentioned earlier, when a copyright infringement occurs, the author of the copyrighted work becomes eligible to obtain damages. The author can file an infringement suit along with a suit for statutory damages. Special damages are awarded by the Judge in statutory damages if the infringement lawsuit is successful.
  5. Term of the Copyright- In India, according to the Copyright Act, the term of copyright is 60 years.

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FAQs On Copyright

Copyright registration is not mandatory in India, however, it is an important factor for filing a lawsuit for infringement of copyright. The registration is a record for the public that work is protected under the Copyright Act, 1957.
  • Right of reproduction
  • Right of Adaptation
  • Right of Communicating to the Public
  • Right of Public Performance
  • Right of Paternity as well as Integrity
  • Right for Distributing
Under section 63 of the Copyright Act, infringement of copyright is a punishable offense. Any individual who commits the offense of infringement shall be liable to imprisonment for 6 months as well as a fine of Rs 50,000.

In India, the validity period of copyright protection is 60 years. The validity period is effective from the year of the death of the author in case of any original literary, artistic, dramatic as well as musical work.

Yes, you can make lawful use of the copyrighted work without the owner’s permission under certain conditions such as,

  • Conduction research for private study
  • For purpose of criticism or review
  • Relating to judicial proceedings
  • Performance by club or society provided no payment is taken from the audience.

No protection is provided for copyright for titles or names, slogans, or phrases.

Copyright registration can be sold, transferred, or gifted only with the consent of the owner of the copyright.

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Swati Singh

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