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Copyright Registration

The owner of copyright or of any exclusive right in a creative work may obtain registration of the copyright claim by delivering to the US Copyright Office the deposit copies of the work together with the application and specified fee.

The deposit must be made within three months after the date of such publication.  The deposit must include two complete copies of the best edition; or if the work is a sound recording, two complete phonorecords of the best edition, together with any printed or other visually perceptible material published with such phonorecords.

Although, registration is not a condition for copyright protection it is a prerequisite for infringement actions to be brought over creative works in the United States.  Registration is available for both published and unpublished works.

A copyright may be registered by filing an application with the US Copyright office.  The application may be filed online or manually.  The online application (eCo) takes less processing time compared to the manual applications (Form Co).  Paper versions of Form TX (literary works); Form VA (visual arts works); Form PA (performing arts works, including motion pictures); Form SR (sound recordings); and Form SE (single serials) may still be used for registration but are comparatively time consuming.  The Copyright Office registers claims to copyright and issues certificates of registration.

U.S. Copyright Office

Inside Copyright Registration