Current copyright law automatically acknowledges the author as the owner of the intellectual property he/she produces.
No formal filing is required. However, by formally registering copyright with the U.S. Copyright Office, a public record of
copyright ownership is established, and enables the owner to pursue legal action in the case of copyright infringement
and collect punitive damages in a court of law.
You may file for copyright using a paper form, or, if the work meets certain criteria, copyright registration may
be completed by filing electronically. Filing electronically is less expensive and backlogs and delays associated with
paper filing are avoided. It is possible to file electronically and send in a hard copy of your publication to meet the
deposit requirement as needed.
Paper Form Registration
Circular 01: Copyright Basics
Forms for paper filing can be found by
style="text-align: center;">Electronic Registration
eCO FAQs (Recommended reading before starting the
This tutorial provides step by step instructions for using the eCO
Technical Issues related to Electronic Filing.
Start your registration online by creating an account.
Single and Standard Forms Users are walked through a series of three yes or no questions to help them determine
whether the single format or standard format filing is appropriate.
Copyright Filing Fees (as of May 14, 2014)
Single Application: $35.00
Standard Application: $55.00
Paper Registration Filing: $85.00
Required for Form TX, Form VA, Form PA, Form SE and Form SR
Deposit Requirements for Paper and Electronic Filing:
Text from: http://www.copyright.gov/fls/fl109.html
Deposit requirements for unpublished worksOne complete copy of the manuscript or phonorecord is required.
o If you file electronically, you may submit your deposit electronically (See sl-35) or in paper format.
o If you file using a paper application or submit a hard-copy deposit for an unpublishedmanuscript:
Deposit requirements for published works: one or two copies required based on date of publication.
o For a work first published in the United States on or after January 1, 1978: provide two complete copies or
phonorecords of the “best edition” as defined in Circular 7B should be deposited.
o For a work first published outside the United States: provide one complete copy or phonorecord of the work as
o If the work is a contribution to a collective work, and published after January 1, 1978: provide one complete copy
or phonorecord of the “best edition”of the collective work or a photocopy of the contribution itself as it was
published in the collective work.
Detailed information on mandatory deposits is available in Circular 7D.
Sources of Additional Information
The definitive source on copyright registration information can be found on the U.S. Copyright Office website.
You may also contact the U.S. Copyright Office you have additional questions.
For further assistance, please contact Valerie Emerson at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202 994-2041.