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How to Register a Copyright in India

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How to Register a Copyright in India

Copyright is a legal or statutory right conferred by the law to creators of literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works and producers of cinematography films and sound recordings. Unlike trademark and patent, copyright protects the expression and not the idea. Further, copyright registration cannot be obtained for titles or names, short word combinations, slogans, short phrases because the same can only be accorded trademarks.

According to Section 2 (o) of the Copyright Act, 1957 “literary work” includes computer programmes, tables and compilations, including computer databases. The Copyright Law in India presently is governed by the Copyright Act, 1957 (As amended in 2012) along with the Copyright Rules, 2013. Both published and unpublished works can be registered under the laws. Copyright comes into existence as soon as a work is created and registration is not mandatory for attaining copyright protection. Nevertheless, certificate of registration of copyright serves as prima facie evidence in a court of law in the case of dispute. If made before or within 5 years of publication, registration establishes sufficient evidence in court regarding the validity of the copyright and the facts stated in the copyright certificate. If registration is made within 3 months after publication of the work or prior to an infringement of the work, statutory damages and litigation fee will be available to the copyright owner in court actions. Otherwise, only an award of actual damages and profits is available to the copyright owner.

Copyright office

Section 9 of the Copyright Act provides for the establishment of an office to be known as the ‘Copyright Office’ for implementation of procedures prescribed under the Act. The Copyright Office is headed by a ‘Registrar of Copyrights’ who is appointed by the Central Government and functions under the directions of the Central Government. The Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India is the concerned nodal ministry.

Registration of copyright

Applications for copyright can be filed at the ‘Copyright Office’, in person, by post or online through the e-Filing facility. The address of the Copyright Office in India is – 4th Floor, Jeevan Deep Building Parliament Street New Delhi-110001.

How to get Copyright for a website?

A website may contain a number of elements that are literary or artistic in nature. For example, words, graphics, videos, software and photos etc. As per the Copyright Office, you will have to file copyright registration request for each of these elements separately.

Duration/Term of Copyright

In the case of original literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works, the duration of copyright is the lifetime of the author or artist, and 60 years counted from the year following the death of the author.

In the case of cinematograph films, sound recordings, photographs, posthumous publications, anonymous and pseudonymous publications, works of government and works of international organizations are protected for a period of 60 years which is counted from the year following the date of publication.


Any individual who is an author or rights owner or assignee or legal heir can file an application for copyright of a work either by the e-filing facility or by speed post. However, with effect from August 01, 2014, the Copyright Counter for filing copyright applications has been closed in order to popularize the electronic filing.

Online Filing Process:

Step 1- Applicant need to create a User ID at by filling basic details.

Step 2- After successful registration, browse Registration/frmLoginPage.aspx and Log In with credentials.

Step 3- Once you are Logged In, click on “e-Filing of Application” in the left menu.

Step 4- Click on the link “Click here for online Copyright Registration”

Stage 5- The online “Copyright Registration Form” is to be filled-up in four steps-

a. Complete the Form XIV, then press SAVE button. Now click Step 2 to move to the Next Step.

b. Fill-up the Statement of Particulars, then press SAVE button and press Step 3 to move to the Next Step.

c. In Step 3, fill-up the Statement of Further particulars and then press SAVE button to Save entered details, press Step 4 to move to Step 4.

d. Make the payment through Debit Card/ Credit Card/ Net Banking or Postal Order or Demand Draft.

After successful submission of the form, Diary Number will be generated. It is advisable to take the printout of “Acknowledgement Slip” and “Copyright Registration Report.”

Offline Filing Process:

a) Application for registration is to be made on Form XIV. Form can be downloaded from here-

b) Separate applications should be made for registration of each work.

c) Each application should be accompanied by the requisite fee.

d) The applications should be signed by the applicant or the advocate in whose favour a Power of Attorney has been executed. The Power of Attorney should also be enclosed.

e) Answer each and every column of the Statement of Particulars and Statement of Further Particulars specifically.

Send the documents by post to Copyright Division, Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Human Resource Development, 4th Floor, Jeevan Deep Building, Parliament Street, New Delhi : 110001

Email Address-
Telephone No, – 011-23362436


A mandatory period of 30 days should be passed post obtaining the diary number so that no objection is filed in the Copyright office against your claim that particular work is created by you. If such objection is filed it may take another one month time to decide as to whether the work could be registered by the Registrar of Copyrights after giving an opportunity of hearing to both the parties.

If no objection is filed the application goes for scrutiny from the examiners. If any discrepancy is found the applicant is given 30 days time to remove the same. Therefore, it may take 2 to 3 month’s time for registration of any work in the ordinary course. The applicant himself or his/her leader may appear in the hearing according to S. 27 of the Act.

As per section 72 of the Copyright Act, 1957 any person aggrieved by the final decision or order of the Registrar of Copyrights may, within three months from the date of the order or decision, appeal to the Copyright Board. The registration of a copyright thus, may take a period of 1 to 1.5 years.


List of Documents required to be submitted by Post along with application form. Refer to the document list based on Type of Work. Click here for list- Documents Required for Copyright Registration in India


The Fee can by paid either through Online mode or Postal Order or Demand Draft. List of Documents required to be submitted by Hand/ By Post along with application form.

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