Copyright Your Intellectual Property

Only $97 and the federal filing fee.

Creating your work took time, so don't let others use it without your permission.

Copyright is a type of legal protection that grants the creator of an original work exclusive rights to decide how it is used. Copyright covers a variety of works, including books, music, software, art, and other creative works. It gives the creator the right to control how their work is used, including who can copy, distribute, or modify it. Copyright also provides financial benefits to the creator, as they can be compensated for the use of their work.

Frequently Asked Questions

How is a copyright different from a patent or a trademark?

Copyrights provide protection for original works of authorship, while patents safeguard discoveries or inventions. Discoveries and ideas cannot be safeguarded under copyright law, but the manner in which they are expressed may be. A trademark protects words, symbols, phrases, or designs identifying the source of the goods and serivices and distinguishing them amongst different entities.

Do I have to copyright my work to be protected?

In order to take legal action for the violation of a U.S. work, it is necessary to have your work copywritten. If registration occurs within five years of publication, it is considered prima facie evidence in a court of law.

How long does copyright protection last?

Generally, copyright protection is in effect for the duration of the creator's lifetime plus 70 years. It lasts for 95 years from the initial publication date if it was made anonymously, for hire, or using a pseudonym or 120 years from the date of production (depending on which ocurred first). For those works published prior to 1978, the timeframes may differ.

I’ve heard about a “poor man’s copyright.” What is it?

A “poor man’s copyright” is a term used to describe a method of claiming copyright protection for a work by sending a copy of the work to yourself. The idea behind this method is that the postmarked envelope provides proof of the date of the work, and can be used to demonstrate that the work was created before any other similar works. However, this is not a legally recognized method of claiming copyright protection and should not be relied on. The best way to protect a work is to register the work with the U.S. Copyright Office. Let us help you do that.

Is my copyright good in other countries?

The United States has copyright agreements in place with numerous countries across the world, which means we respect the copyrights of their citizens and vice versa. Nevertheless, there are still some countries with which the US does not have copyright ties.

I bought a house and found a diary in the attick. Can I copyright it?

It is possible to obtain copyright protection on a work only if the owner of the rights has authorised it. For example, via inheritance or by will. Therefore, registration is only available to the creator of the work or the creator's legal representatives, such as their heirs or assignees.

Do I have to renew my copyright?

Works created on or after January 1, 1978 cannot be renewed. For works published or registered before that date, it is optional to apply for renewal after 28 years, which may give some legal benefits.

Do I have to send Filthy Rich Idea my creative work?

We will require a nonreturnable and full version of your work if it hasn't been published yet and two copies if it has already been published. Once you have placed your order, we will provide you with specific guidelines.

Are there specific requirements regarding the title of my work that I should know when completing my application?

You should not provide generic titles, such as “Untitled,” “No Title,” “Working Title,” or “No title yet,” as the title of the work. Works registered with generic titles may be difficult to find in the public record. Additionally, only titles containing Roman letters and/or Arabic numerals are being accepted. Other types of letters, numerals, or characters, such as Cyrillic or Mandarin will not be accepted including diacritical marks, such as ç, à, ñ, or ü.

After I complete the application, what happens?

You can expect to receive an official document that confirms your copyright claim and serves as prima facie evidence of the validity of your copyright should the need arise within 2-9 months from the U.S. Copyright Office. Longer wait times may occur depending on applications that need clarification.

If there are any issues or deficiencies with your application, it may cause a delay in the processing of your claim. Additionally, applicants should keep an eye on their email account for messages from the U.S. Copyright Office. If you receive an email from the Office, you should respond within 45 days and provide a comprehensive answer to the examiner’s questions.

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