How long does a copyright last?

| Aug 27, 2019 | Uncategorized |

Creative talents are always a wonderful thing to have. You get to create things with your imagination and then share them with others in Colorado. You can entertain, bring joy or make people think through your creations. However, there are always those out there who want to take what you have worked hard on and claim it as their own. The law helps you out by providing you with a copyright. This entitles you to the rights to the work from the moment you make it available to the public. How long it lasts, though, depends on when you first got your copyright.

 The U.S. Copyright Office explains if you first publish before 1978, there are various rules that apply to your copyright length. It is a little complex, so you would need to do your research and gather your information to figure out how long your copyright would last.

 The rules for after 1978 are a bit more straightforward. If you publish the work under your name, you have the copyright as long as you are alive and then your heirs hold it for 70 additional years. If you publish anonymously or someone hired you to make the work, then you have the copyright for 95 years from the publication or you can hold it for 120 years after its creation, depending on the situation.

 You do not have to renew your copyright if you got it after 1978.  In most cases, even if you did secure it before then, you do not have to renew either. However, you should register your copyright because it does provide you with some additional protections and rights. This information is for education and is not legal advice.