Intellectual Property: Your Questions Answered

Intellectual property is an incredibly important asset to many businesses, but it can be difficult to understand how to go about protecting your creativity and hard work. The team at JMW works hard to eliminate those difficulties - one of the ways we do this is by answering your frequently asked questions.

How long does Copyright last?

The life of the author plus 70 years from end of year of death (or in the case of films, 70 years from the death of the longest surviving of certain specified people involved in making the film). Computer generated works, broadcasts and sound recordings are protected for 50 years. In respect of sound recordings, protection may be extended to 70 years if the recording has been published or made available to the public within the initial 50 years. Published editions have 25 years protection.

Does Copyright need to be registered to be effective?

Copyright arises automatically when the work is created. No registration required.

When does Copyright Occur?

When the work is recorded in a permanent form. Copyright is only available for an original work.

What is protected by Copyright?

Most literary, dramatic, musical works, databases, sound recordings, films, broadcasts and artistic works (photographs, sculptures, works of architecture and those other artistic craftsmanship), including published editions.

What is an infringement of Copyright?

Occurs if a substantial part of the work is copied (directly or indirectly) irrespective of whether the infringer knows the copying is an infringement, or where unauthorised copies are imported or sold and the infringer has knowledge the product is an infringing copy. If a similar or identical work is created independently, this will not infringe copyright.

What are Copyright owners rights?

The copyright owner has the exclusive right to copy the work, issue copies to the public or adapt it, translate it or perform it in public. The owner can grant licences to others to use the work.

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