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How Much Does a Copyright Cost? Exploring Registration Fees

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Manish Jindal

December 6, 2023

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How Much Does a Copyright Cost? Exploring Registration Fees

If you’ve ever wondered about the financial aspects of obtaining a copyright for your creative works, you’re in the right place.

Copyright protection is an essential consideration for artists, writers, musicians, and creators of all kinds.

This article will provide you with helpful information on the subject of how much does a copyright costs.

The Copyright Act

The Indian Copyright law safeguards various forms of creative expression, including literary works, theatrical performances, musical compositions, artistic creations, colorised versions of films, and sound recordings, for specific timeframes.

Copyright protection for literary, dramatic, musical, and artistic works, for instance, extends throughout the author’s lifetime and an additional sixty years.

During this period, the copyright holder maintains ownership, and obtaining consent is imperative for any production or distribution.

This law shields rights such as reproduction, adaptation, distribution, public performance, and public display.

Should anyone infringe upon copyrighted material, the original creator holds the right to take legal action.

In a legal setting, such claims can be substantiated with substantial evidence presented before judges and legal representatives.

The Complete Guide to Copyright Registration

Copyright protection in India grants creators rights such as reproduction, public communication, modification, and translation of their works.

Registering copyright from the copyright office ensures the safeguarding and rewarding of creators’ rights to their property and the enjoyment of their creations.

The process of copyright registration is governed by the Copyright Act of 1957.

Under this act, the artistic expressions of an author are safeguarded against reproduction by others, preventing unauthorised use without the original creator’s consent.

If their work is unlawfully modified and used, the original author holds the exclusive right to legally pursue the violators. Generally, copyright protection extends for a period of 60 years.

Note: Check out the linked article to learn how to copyright your content.

How Much Does a Copyright Cost?

The official fees for copyright filing in India differ based on the type of work. The table below illustrates the registration costs for various types of work.

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S.No.On What PayableOfficial Government fee (INR)
1.For an application for registration or copyright in a: 
(a) Literary, Dramatic, Musical or Artistic workRs. 500/- per work
(b) Provided that in respect of a Literary or Artistic work which is used or is capable of being used in relation to any goods or services (Section 45)Rs. 2,000/- per work
2.For an application for change in particulars of copyright entered in the Register of Copyrights in respect of a: 
(a)Literary, Dramatic, Musical or Artistic workRs. 200/- per work
(b)Provided that in respect of a literary or Artistic work which is used or is capable of being used in relation to any goods or services (Section 45)Rs. 1,000/- per work
3.For an application for registration of Copyright in a Cinematograph Film (Section 45)Rs. 5,000/- per work
4.For an application for registration of change in particulars of copyright entered in the Register of Copyrights in respect of Cinematograph film (Section 45)Rs. 2,000/- per work
5.For an application for registration of copyright in a Sound Recording (Section 45)Rs. 2,000/- per work
6.For an application for registration of changes in particulars of copyright entered in the Register of Copyrights in respect of Sound Recording (Section 45)Rs. 1,000/- per work
7.For taking extracts from the indexes (Section 47)Rs. 500/- per work
8.For taking extracts from the Register of Copyrights (Section 47).Rs. 500/- per work
9.For a certified copy of an extract from the Register of Copyrights of the indexes (Section 47)Rs. 500/- per copy
10.For a certified copy of any other public document in the custody of the Register of Copyright or Secretary of the Copyright BoardRs. 500/- per Copy
11.For an application for prevention of importation of infringing copies (Section 53) per place of entryRs. 1,200/- per work

Is Copyright Obtained for Free?

For creators seeking copyright protection for their works, it might be surprising to learn that copyright is automatically granted to original creations as soon as they are “fixed in a tangible form of expression.”

This means that the moment you create something in a lasting medium, you possess copyright over it.

For instance, while an impromptu street dance performance without any recording is too temporary to be considered “fixed in a tangible form of expression,” recording your performance on video solidifies it in a lasting form that qualifies.

You automatically acquire a copyright for the taped performance by doing this.

Hence, the answer to the question “Can I get a copyright for free?” is affirmative.

In reality, acquiring copyright is inherent, and it stems from the instant your original work is expressed in a permanent medium.

Obtaining a copyright registration is necessary for enhanced protection, allowing for better oversight of its usage and the defense of your rights.

Suggested Reading: How to check copyright application status in India

Copyright License Cost: An Overview

S.No.For an application for Compulsory LicenseFee
1.For a license to republish a Literary, Dramatic, Musical or Artistic work (Sections 31, 31A,31B* and 32A)Rs. 5,000/- per work
2.For a license to communicate any work to the public by Broadcast(Section 31(1)(b))Rs. 40,000/- per applicant/per sataton
3.For license to republish a Cinematograph Film (Section 31)Rs. 15,000/- per work
4.For a license to republish a sound recording (Section 31)Rs. 10,000/- per work
5.For a license to perform any work in public (Section 31)Rs. 5,000/- per work
6.For a license to publish or communicate to the public the work or translation (Section 31A)Rs. 5,000/- per work
7.For a license to publish any work in any format useful for person with disability (Section 31 B)Rs. 2,000/- per work
8.For an application for a license to produce and publish a translation of a Literary or Dramatic work in any Language (Section 32 & 32-A )Rs. 5,000/- per work

Conclusion

Understanding the expenses associated with copyright registration is a crucial step in the copyright process.

The average cost can vary depending on the type of work and the complexities involved in the copyright application process.

Seeking advice from an experienced lawyer can help you navigate through the financial aspects of securing your creative rights.

Remember, investing in copyright protection is an investment in safeguarding your intellectual property.

FAQs

How much does it cost to get a copyright?

The cost of registering a copyright varies depending on the type of work and the country. Fees may also differ based on factors like whether the work is published or unpublished.

Are copyright costs the same for all types of creative works?

No, the cost of copyright registration can vary based on the type of work, such as literary, artistic, musical, or others.

Is online copyright registration a reliable option?

Yes, online copyright registration can be a reliable and convenient way to register your work, but it’s important to follow the process correctly.

Should I seek legal assistance for copyright registration?

While it’s not mandatory, seeking legal assistance, especially from copyright attorneys, can help ensure proper registration and protection of your creative work.

Can copyright registration help in case of copyright infringement issues?

Yes, a registered copyright can provide stronger legal grounds for pursuing potential infringement lawsuit claims in case someone else uses your work without permission.

Is copyright registration in India free of charge?

No, copyright registration is not free in India. The cost of registering a copyright varies based on the type of work you are registering. The fee for copyright registration of items like books, songs, paintings, etc. is INR 500/-.

How much does it cost to copyright a name?

A name is not encompassed by copyrights, but it receives protection through trademark registration. Therefore, the cost of filing a trademark application as an individual is Rs. 4500/-.

How much does it cost to copyright a song recording in India?

A sound recording refers to a recording of sounds, regardless of the medium used to produce them. Therefore, the fees for copyright registration of a sound recording amount to INR 2000/-.

How much does it cost to copyright artwork?

The fee for copyright registration for the artworks is INR 500/-. However, the work must be original and not a translation, adaptation, or derivative of any pre-existing work.

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