Advantages of Filing a Copyright Registration

Last Updated at: Jul 25, 2020
Advantages Of Filing A Copyright Registration
Experts say that newspapers are the copyright holders of e-papers and all of their material and any effort to download and share e-papers on social media or devices is a breach of the Copyright Act. Such can involve fake facts, could be digitally altered, and offer rise to a plethora of legal concerns.


A copyright is a collection of rights that prevents other people from using your work without your permission. The copyright registration is when you register a file with the Copyright Office that describes your identity and works to other people. If someone uses your work that is registered, you can get statutory damages from the court.

The copyright registration procedure allows the owner of an exclusive right in the automatically copyrighted work to register the work with the Copyright Office. This registration is voluntary and may be effected at any point the work is still protected by copyright. The copyright registration is available for both published and unpublished works. Although registration is not necessary to establish the copyright protection for creative work, when properly registered, the copyright owner is provided with the additional legal protection that exceeds the cost and the time of gaining such registration.

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Benefits of Registering Your Copyright

The copyright owner must register a work in a timely manner for the following reasons.


1. Power to impose Copyrights by Filing a Lawsuit for Copyright Infringement 

2.Notifying the Public About the Ownership

3.Legal Proof of Ownership Possession

4.Ownership Validity

5.Eligible for Statutory Damages, Attorney Fees, and Costs of Suit


Power to impose Copyrights by Filing a Lawsuit for Copyright Infringement 

One must have a clear perspective on the difference between copyright and copyright registration. Having a clear knowledge will help to understand the importance of copyright registration. Without a copyright registration of your work, you will have to collect proof before blaming someone in the court of law. Copyright registration is extremely essential if you want to protect your work from unauthorized use. 

The copyright registration is a precondition for bringing a copyright infringement lawsuit. The copyright owner can only advance with a copyright violation lawsuit if the work has been formally registered. If not, he or she will not be eligible for advancing with the lawsuit. 

If a copyright registration has happened before any infringement takes place, or within 3 months from its publication date of work, it makes the copyright registrant entitled for “legal costs and the attorney’s fees” and “statutory damages”. In case the infringement occurs before the effective date of the copyright registration or after a three-month grace period, then the copyright owner is not entitled to receive the statutory damages or the legal costs and the attorney’s fees. The date when the Copyright Office receives the complete registration application which consists of application, fee, and the deposit copies, is the effective date of the copyright registration.

The Certificate of Registration serves as the prima facie evidence that the work is original and owned by the registrant of the copyrighted work. This becomes very vital if it becomes essential for the copyright owner to get a preliminary injunction against a copyright infringer.

Notifying the Public About the Ownership

The copyrighted work once filled will be published in the Copyright Office’s Catalog. This will be searchable by the public. The catalog does protect the work. It not only notifies the public that the individual owns the work but also helps in avoiding any innocent infringements. 

Legal Proof of Ownership Possession

By any chance, if a third party reworks or distributes the copyrighted work, the copyright registration will come to the owner’s rescue. The best legal benefit of getting copyright registration is being able to notify the public that the work belongs to an owner. It is also helpful in eliminating the chances of possible infringements because the public does not possess the right to share or rework on any copyrighted work. If the copyholder proves the copying party had access to the original content and their works are similar, then the former will be readily supported by the law on the basis of the copyrights act.  

Ownership Validity

Apart from these, copyright registering also permit the copyright holders to sue infringers in a federal court. If it is done before or within 5 years of the publication, then it establishes adequate evidence in the court regarding the validity of the copyright. Challenging the supposed ownership will be a burden itself. This ownership can be very useful when someone is trying to infringe and cause major damage to the work. It is also useful when the copyright owner needs an immediate court order to stop the infringer’s unlawful actions.

Eligible for Statutory Damages, Attorney Fees, and Costs of Suit

When faced with copyright infringement, the owner becomes eligible for a suit of statutory damages. The statutory damages permit courts to award special damages in case of a successful infringement lawsuit. This relieves the copyright owner from the duty of proving actual damages. Moreover, there is a huge value to it considering the proving of statutory damage over infringement is a difficult task. Furthermore, the copy owner will recover some amount for each of their infringed work. Some leverage necessary to bring the lawsuit to an early close is provided.

Registration during this period does qualify the copyright owner to obtain an award of attorney fees and costs of suit. Usually, the legal costs in any copyright infringement lawsuit, and in particular the attorney’s fees, are extremely expensive. The court has the discretion to award attorney’s fees and legal costs to the copyright owner. One must timely register their work for this.  

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A lawyer with 14 years' experience, Vikram has worked with several well-known corporate law firms before joining Vakilsearch.