What is real
is not external form.



CONSTANTIN BRANCUSI

How do you establish the initial owner of a work?

27.09.2018


It should seem normal to presume that the author of a work is the person that wrote the respective work. Isn’t so? Not so fast. There are situations when particular standards are needed to determine how the ownership applies.

Copyright law

When a person writes a work, the content is protected by the copyright law. This is a form of law that protects intellectual property and gives full rights to the creator of a work on it.

But what happens if a work has two or more authors? Who owns the respective work? Or when the creator of the work is someone’s employee and his work was designed strictly for professional purposes?

 

Two or more authors

When a work has two or more authors who intend to combine their contribution into inseparable parts and fully intended to be co-authors, the respective work is considered to be a joint work and the authors share the statue of joint copyright owners. This provides them an equal right to register and enforce the copyright. Also gives them the right to commercially exploit the copyright with the condition that all of them get an equal share of the proceedings, if no written agreement that stipulates the contrary exists.

Employee’s work

If the author of a work is an employee and creates his work while being employed and for professional purposes, than the employer will own the copyright. That is not the case for freelancers who offer their creative services to specific businesses. They will own the copyright of the work as the initial author of it.

So, know your expectations when you start writing!

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