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Copyright Registration

What is Copyright?

Copyright is a form of intellectual property protection granted under the Indian Copyright Act 1957, to the creators of original works of authorship such as literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, and certain other intellectual works The copyright vests in original work in whatever form it may be and in India it is not mandatory but useful in courts where civil and/or criminal proceedings can be taken to protect it.

Copyright owners have the exclusive rights to do or authorise the doing of any of the following in respect of a work :

  • To reproduce the work in any material form including the storing of it in any medium by electronic means
  • To issue copies of the work to the public not being copies already in publication
  • To perform the work in public, or communicate it to the public
  • To make any translation or adaptation of the work
  • To sell or give on hire, or offer for sale or hire a copy (in case of a computer programme), regardless of whether such copy has been sold or given on hire on earlier occasions.

Copyright confers a number of rights, some or all of which can be granted to others either exclusively or non-exclusively

The requirements for filing the copyright application in India

  • Full Name, Address and Nationality of Applicant & that of the author The year & country of first publication of the work
  • List of countries where the work has been published and the year of publication
  • The year & the country of last publication
  • Six copies of the work Power of Attorney
  • In case of labels, which can be used as trademark, firstly clear copyright search certificate has to be received from the trademark registry & only thereafter, application for copyright can be filed in the copyright office

The procedure for the grant of copyright in India

  • The application with complete details is filed.
  • Thereafter, the application is examined and objections, if any, are raised thereto
  • The certificate is issued by the copyright office after the objections, if any, are removed to the satisfaction of the department

The process of obtaining the certificate of copyright in India takes about 12 months.

Is it compulsory for me to register my work with Copyright Office to get copyright protection?

It is not necessary under the Indian Copyright Act to register with the Copyright Office to get copyright protection. Registration of the work is however highly recommended because such registration is helpful in an infringement suit. As per the Copyright Act, the register of copyrights (where the details of the work are entered on registration) is prima facie evidence of the particulars entered therein. The documents purporting to be copies of any entries therein, or extracts from the register which are certified by the Registrar of copyrights and with the seal of the copyright office, are admissible as evidence in all courts without proof or production of the original. India is a member of both Berne and Universal Conventions and Indian law extends protection to all copyrighted works originating from any of the convention countries. However, in case of infringement of copyright, during court proceedings, copyright registration with the government of India serves as an advantage