Loren Donald Pearson

Loren Donald Pearson is a Registered Patent Attorney and a Florida Bar Board Certified Intellectual Property Attorney.  He is a partner at Assouline & Berlowe, PA and leads its intellectual property group.  Read his profile

Copyright is a form of protection provided by the laws of the United States (title 17, U. S. Code) to the authors of “original works of authorship,” including literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, and certain other intellectual works.

Copyright is secured automatically upon creation of the work.  The way in which copyright protection is secured is frequently misunderstood.  No publication or registration or other action in the Copyright Office is required to secure copyright.  There are, however, certain definite advantages to registration.

In general, copyright registration is a legal formality intended to make a public record of the basic facts of a particular copyright.  However, registration is not a condition of copyright protection. Even though registration is not a requirement for protection, the copyright law provides several inducements or advantages to encourage copyright owners to make registration.

Among these advantages are the following:

  • Registration establishes a public record of the copyright claim.
  • Before an infringement suit may be filed in court, registration is necessary for works of U. S. origin.
  • If made before or within five years of publication, registration will establish prima facie evidence in court of the validity of the copyright and of the facts stated in the certificate.
  • If registration is made within three months after publication of the work or prior to an infringement of the work,statutory damages and attorney’s fees 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.
  • Registration allows the owner of the copyright to record the registration with the U. S. Customs Service for protection against the importation of infringing copies.

Registration may be made at any time within the life of the copyright.

Registering a copyright can be a relatively straight-forward process.  So, traditional hourly billing models may not be practical.

Loren Pearson offers non-traditional billing for many of his copyright clients.

Training of in-house staff is one possibility.  Loren Pearson trains a paralegal or in-house legal staffer to file copyright applications.

Monthly retainers are another alternative.  For business with continuing production of large numbers of works (e.g. an architecture firm or computer programmer, or commercial photographer), a monthly retainer can be arranged in order to provide you with a set budget.

Of course some projects are so complex, so valuable, or so headed to litigation, that an attorney must be used on a given registration.

Request a consultation with Loren Pearson to register your copyright.