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Intellectual Property FAQS

10 Reasons You Should Claim and Register Your Copyright

  1. A copyright gives you the exclusive right to reproduce or copy the work or change its form, like creating a sequel and revising or updating the work.
  2. Only you can perform the work or display it in public; everyone else has to ask you first.
  3. You’re the only person who can distribute the work for commercial purposes.
  4. You can sell your right to control over the copyrighted work, so when you write your next big thriller you can sell the movie rights and keep the right to create a sequel.
  5. Registration informs the world that you own the work and all the rights of ownership.
  6. Registration gives the owner certain rights such as the right to sue in federal court and the right to certain other remedies.
  7. Your work will be in the Library of Congress!
  8. You can’t sue for copyright infringement until your copyright claim is registered with the Copyright Office.
  9. A copyright must be registered within 3 months of publication to entitle the registrant an award of statutory damages or attorney’s fees in an infringement suit.
  10. If you succeed, the infringer may have to pay your lawyer.


This publication and the information included in it are not intended to serve as a substitute for consultation with an attorney. Specific legal issues, concerns and conditions always require the advice of appropriate legal professionals.

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