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Steps to Registering a Copyright

The originality of a creative work can and should be protected. For this purpose, the Library of Congress provides an accessible process to register for a copyright. It simply involves filling out an application, sending in a nonrefundable fee, and providing a copy of the work. These individual steps can be complicated, and it can be useful to have legal assistance when going through the process.

The application can be completed online or mailed to the Library of Congress. However, some specific applications have to be filed on paper and mailed in. Types of these works include vessel hull designs, multiple author works, or copyright renewal forms. Furthermore, there are standard applications or single applications. The appropriate form is determined by how many works/ideas are being registered, and how many authors collaborated to create the work.

Secondly, filing fees accompany the application. These fees can also be payed online through pay.gov, charged to a previously set-up account, or mailed. Amounts are dependent upon the specific form, and can range from $25-$400. There are over 15 types of forms; knowing the correct one to submit is necessary in order to determine the amount owed.

Lastly, a nonreturnable copy of the work must be included; some works can be submitted online if they meet a certain set of criteria, whereas others have to be mailed. After the Library of Congress receives all pieces of the registration packet, a certificate of registration is issued to the owner of the copyrighted work.

The Dallas copyright lawyer at Gagnon, Peacock & Vereeke, P.C. recognizes online the difficulty of understanding the legal jargon that outlines the copyright registration process. Consulting with a qualified copyright attorney can ensure that the process is completed correctly and efficiently.