Connelly Law PLLCCopyrights
Help With Copyrights
In the U.S., copyrights are governed by the Copyright Act of 1976. A copyright is defined as the exclusive legal right given to an originator or an assignee to print, publish, perform, film, or record literary, artistic, or musical material and to authorize others to do the same. Importantly, while copyrights prohibit unauthorized copying of a particular work, the ideas contained within copyrighted material are not protected. For example, copyrights might cover a machine’s description whereas a patent would protect the machine itself.
Creators of works can register copyrights with the Library of Congress’s Copyright Office. This is important as in 2019, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that copyrights must be federally registered in order to sue for infringement. The intellectual property attorneys at Connelly Law PLLC can help clients with all aspects of the copyright protection and enforcement.
What can be Copyrighted?
Examples of works which may be copyrighted in the U.S. include:
- Dramatic, musical, and literary works
- Architectural works
- Computer software programs
- Audiovisual works and motion pictures
- Sound recordings
- Choreographic and pantomime works
- Derivative works and compilations
- Sculptural, pictorial, and graphic works
Securing a copyright provides several advantages. First, registering a copyright creates a record of the creator’s claim. Second, a copyright must be registered before one can file an infringement lawsuit in federal court. Finally, registering copyrights before infringement happens or within three months of when your work is published might permit the recovery of attorney’s fees and statutory penalties through a lawsuit. Plaintiff’s who can show willful infringement may be entitled to damages up to $150,000 per work.
To apply for a copyright registration, one must submit the proper application form, a nonrefundable filing fee, and a copy of the work to be copyrighted. Connelly Law PLLC can help you to submit your application and fee electronically and track the application status.
From Our Founder
Make Your Mark
If you have an idea and believe that you need intellectual property protection, we will be happy to review your IP portfolio. We can provide you with ideas and recommendations about how you can best protect your intellectual property. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.
Litigating Copyright Infringement
Regardless of the steps that you take to protect original works, an infringement can still occur. You should remain vigilant to detect infringement as infringement can devalue your work.
The intellectual property lawyers at Connelly Law PLLC have extensive experience litigating the infringement of copyrights. Often, we are able to avoid litigation and are able to negotiate licensing agreements for our clients to resolve infringement matters. However, when negotiations are unsuccessful, we are prepared to litigate infringement cases to recover damages when necessary.
The intellectual property attorneys at Connelly Law PLLC are prepared to help you to secure copyrights for your original works and to protect your rights. To learn more, contact us today to schedule a consultation.
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