Copyright is an exclusive right given to the owners of the work. Copyright is a voluntary right conferred upon an author or owner of the work once the work is created. Copyright protection subsists in the work from the moment the work is created. However, to legally protect the work and get the added benefits, copyright registration is necessary. Unlike a trademark, registration of copyright is not mandatory; however, to legally protect the work and to have enforcement rights against the infringers, registration is handy. Also, in case of any infringement, a registered copyrighted work acts as prima – facie evidence to the case.
Step – 1: Filing of the Application:
- The Applicant or the agent appointed can either physically or through speed post/ courier or e-fling file an application under Form- XIV of Copyright Rules, 2013 for the registration of copyright along with the prescribed fees (as per https://copyright.gov.in/frmFeeDetailsShow.aspx) and essential documents stated above.
- Separate applications have to be filed for each work. After receiving the application, the registrar will issue a diary number to the said application.
Step- 2: Examination of the application:
After the issuance of the diary number, the examiner of copyrights will review the application within 30 days of the filing of the application, during which he/she shall call for objections to the said copyright.
There is a two-fold aspect in this step:
1. If there are no objections raised, the examiner of copyright will move to the next step to scrutinize the documents to find discrepancies, if any.
- In case any discrepancies arise, a letter of discrepancy is sent to the applicant, and the applicant is given time to file a reply to the examination report, based on which the hearing of the application will be set by the examiner. Once the issues are resolved, the application is sent for registration.
- In case there are zero discrepancies, the application is directly sent for registration.
2. If any objection is raised, then the following procedure is to be followed:
- Letter of objection is sent to both the parties, and a hearing is set up by the registrar.
- Upon hearing if the objection is rejected, the application goes ahead for scrutiny, and the above procedure is followed.
- In case the objection is not clarified or resolved, the application is rejected, and a rejected letter is sent to the applicant.
Step – 3: Registration:
- Once the entire examination process is done, the registrar will enter all the details of copyright in the register of copyrights and issue a certificate of copyrights to the applicant Registration of Copyrights (RoC)
- Thus, the whole idea of copyrights is to acknowledge the originality and creativity of the work. However, the process looks small while reading; it is lengthy and might take up to 12 to 15 months to get it registered.