Calabasas Copyright Attorneys
Providing Experienced Copyright Services Throughout Greater Los Angeles & Southern California
Copyrights vest to a creator of an original work of authorship only when that work is fixed in a tangible form. Some common examples of original works include literary, musical, artistic, and other creative expressions, both published and unpublished. Registration is not necessary for the copyright protection to vest; however, registering is necessary to enforce certain rights and protections in federal court and to recover statutory damages and legal fees in an infringement case. To preserve the right to statutory damages and attorneys’ fees, an application must be filed within three months of publication or before infringement begins.
At Tsircou Law, we help our clients register, license, and enforce copyrights. We also assist clients prior to the creation of copyrightable works by helping them identify and resolve ownership issues, financial considerations, and other relevant matters, including agreement preparations.
If you have any questions about copyrights or our legal services, feel free to request a free 15-minute consultation with our Calabasas copyright lawyers using our online form.
What Is Copyright Law and Copyright Infringement?
Like patents, copyrights are a form of intellectual property that help creators protect their original works. They give the creator exclusive rights to use and distribute those works, including making copies and adaptations for public performance or other media. With copyrights in place, creators can also license their work for others in exchange for royalties and compensation. At Tsircou Law, our goal is to help clients get the most out of their creations through copyright efforts.
If an individual or owner uses your original work without your expressed authorization, it is copyright infringement. This extends to songs, books, photographs, art pieces, and more. These creations cannot be reproduced in any way for commercial gain. Additionally, creating derivative works based on existing copyrighted materials without permission may also be considered copyright infringement depending on the circumstances and if it’s done without proper attribution.
Copyright infringement can lead to civil charges and, in certain circumstances, criminal charges. As far as civil suits are concerned, the penalty for copyright infringement can be quite severe—fines of up to $150,000 per violation, with additional court-ordered restitution for legal costs and attorney fees. Criminal charges can be pursued if the infringement was egregious and when there is willful intent. Penalties for criminal charges include fines of as much as $250,000 for each violation and prison sentences of up to 5 years. In addition, copyright infringement will also have intangible effects on violators related to reputational damage.
Should I Register My Copyright?
To secure maximum copyright protections, it is a good idea to register your work with the U.S. Copyright Office. This gives you more power in pursuing legal action against any person who uses your work without permission or authorization from you—the copyright owner—thereby giving you control over how your work is used commercially. When a work is registered with the U.S. Copyright Office, it creates a public record, which serves as solid evidence that the creator owns exclusive rights to the work in question and that it was created at a specific point in time. This legal protection gives creators more authority and standing when they sue for damages related to infringement, potentially making the process much easier. Registration can also give you extra assurance that you can recover statutory damages and legal fees.
How Our Calabasas Copyright Attorneys Can Help You
Tsircou Law strives to help creators protect their original works from being misused and provide valuable legal insight on how best to use one’s copyrights to gain competitive advantages in relevant markets and industries. Based in Calabasas, CA, our copyright lawyers provide assistance in protecting and enforcing intellectual property rights related to copyrights, patents, and trademarks for businesses and creatives in the wider Los Angeles area. We handle all legal aspects of copyrights, from registration to enforcement and litigation.
To speak with one of our experienced Calabasas copyright lawyers, we encourage you to call our office at (818) 960-7749.