IP Basics: How long does Copyright protection last?

While copyright protection arises automatically, it doesn’t last forever. It is important that you are aware how long your copyright protection will last, as once this expires the work will go into the public domain.

The duration of copyright protection does depend on the type of work being protected.

For literary, dramatic, artistic and musical works, the copyright protection last for the life of the owner plus 70 years.

If the works were created in the course of employment, the death of the employee still stands as the author, even though it is the employer who owns the copyright. Also, if the work has more than one owner, it is the death of the last owner that sets the 70 years clock off.

If the author of a work is unknown, the 70 years will run from the year of creation.

Other types of works have differing time period, for example computer generated works are protected for 50 years from creation.

If you would like any further information on copyright protection, please get in touch with the Lawdit team today.

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