FAQs on Copyrights

What is the Procedure for Registration of a Work Under the Copyright Act, 1957?

The procedure for registration is as follows:

a) Application for registration is to be made on Form IV ( Including Statement of Particulars and Statement of Further Particulars) as prescribed in the first schedule to the Rules ;

b) Separate applications should be made for registration of each work;

c) Each application should be accompanied by the requisite fee prescribed in the second schedule to the Rules ; and

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What is the Fee for Registration of a Work Under the Copyright Act, 1957?

Please go to the link fee details on the Home Page for details. One can pay fee in favor of ‘Registrar of Copyrights’ payable at ‘new Delhi’. The fee is not reimbursable in case of rejection of the application.

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Can I Myself File an Application for Registration of Copyright of a Work Directly?

Yes. Any individual who is an author or rights owner or assignee or legal heir can file application for copyright of a work either at the copyright office or by post or by e-filing facility from the Copyright Office Website

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What are the Guidelines Regarding Registration of a Work Under the Copyright Act?

Chapter VI of the Copyright Rules, 1958, as amended, sets out the procedure for the registration of a work. Copies of the Act and Rules can be obtained from the Manager of Publications, Publication Branch, Civil Lines, Delhi or his authorized dealers on payment or download from the Copyright Office Website

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Whether Unpublished Works are Registered?

Yes. Both published and unpublished works can be registered. Copyright in works published before 21st January, 1958, i.e., before the Copyright Act, 1957 came in force, can also be registered, provided the works still enjoy copyright. Three copies of published work may be sent along with the application. If the work to be registered is unpublished, a copy of the manuscript has to be sent along with the application for affixing the stamp of the Copyright Office in proof of the work having been registered.

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Whether Computer Software or Computer Programme can be Registered?

Yes. Computer Software or programme can be registered as a ‘literary work’. As per Section 2 (o) of the Copyright Act, 1957 “literary work” includes computer programmes, tables and compilations, including computer databases. ‘Source Code’ has also to be supplied along with the application for registration of copyright for software products.

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How Can I Get Copyright Registration for my Website?

A web-site contains several works such as literary works, artistic works (photographs etc.), sound recordings, video clips, cinematograph films and broadcastings and computer software too. Therefore, a separate application has to be filed for registration of all these works.

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How Long I Have to Wait to Get My Work Registered by the Copyright Office?

After you file your application and receive diary number you have to wait for a mandatory period of 30 days so that no objection is filed in the Copyright office against your claim that particular work is created by you. If such objection is filed it may take another one month time to decide as to whether the work could be registered by the Registrar of Copyrights after giving an opportunity of hearing the matter from both the parties.

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Is an Opportunity for Hearing Given in all the Cases Pertaining to Rejection of Registration?

Yes. As per the Principles of Natural Justice' (i.e audi altram paltram) no one can be punished without being heard. As per the rule 27 of the Copyright Rules, 1958 no application is rejected without giving an opportunity to be heard. The applicant himself or his/her pleader may appear in the hearing.

As per section 72 of the Copyright Act, 1957 any person aggrieved by the final decision or order of the Registrar of Copyrights may, within three months from the date of the order or decision, appeal to the Copyright Board.

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What is a Copyright?

Copyright is a right given by the law to creators of literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works and producers of cinematograph films and sound recordings. In fact, it is a bundle of rights including, inter alia, rights of reproduction, communication to the public, adaptation and translation of the work. There could be slight variations in the composition of the rights depending on the work.

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What is the Scope of Protection in the Copyright Act, 1957?

The Copyright Act, 1957 protects original literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works and cinematograph films and sound recordings from unauthorized uses. Unlike the case with patents, copyright protects the expressions and not the ideas. There is no copyright protection for ideas, procedures, methods of operation or mathematical concepts as such (Please see Article 9.2. of TRIPS).

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Does Copyright Apply to Titles and Names?

Copyright does not ordinarily protect titles by themselves or names, short word combinations, slogans, short phrases, methods, plots or factual information. Copyright does not protect ideas or concepts. To get the protection of copyright a work must be original.

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Is it Necessary to Register a Work to Claim Copyright?

No. Acquisition of copyright is automatic and it does not require any formality. Copyright comes into existence as soon as a work is created and no formality is required to be completed for acquiring copyright. However, certificate of registration of copyright and the entries made therein serve as prima facie evidence in a court of law with reference to dispute relating to ownership of copyright.

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Where Can I File an Application for Registration of Copyright for a Work?

The Copyright Office has been set up to provide registration facilities to all types of works and is headed by a Registrar of Copyrights and is located at 4th Floor, Jeevan Deep Building, Parliament Streeet, New Delhi- 110 001. The applications for registration of works can be filled at the counter provided at the Copyright Office from 2.30 P.M. to 4.30. P.M. from Monday to Friday. The applications are also accepted by post.

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