Pre-litigation strategy

As an author or holder of another form of intellectual property, you are probably aware of the importance of protecting your work with copyright registration. According to the United States Copyright Office, this provides you with a public record of your work and a certificate of registration.

The United States Copyright Office states that if you have registered your intellectual or creative property with their office, that it is protected under the law. It is also protected once it is in a “tangible form.” This includes being accessible, or visible, when using a device such as a computer.

It is also important to register your work to protect against copyright infringement. The United States Copyright Office indicates that when you register your work, it can potentially increase your chances of receiving statutory damages. Furthermore, you may also be eligible for attorney’s fees when the case has been successfully litigated.

Even though a work can be protected under the law, copyright infringement, just like other crimes, is often committed. While some of these instances may be unintentional and due to a lack of understanding or education, other instances may be conscious and intentional. The ramifications of this are outlined in the Title 18-Crimes and Criminal Procedure, U.S. Code which can be located at the United States copyright Office’s website.

If you believe, or have determined, that your copyright has been violated on a computer program, non-fiction or fiction book, piece of visual art, or other intellectual property, it’s important to contact an attorney as soon as possible. It will also be necessary for you to obtain the services of an attorney that has copyright law experience.

An attorney will be able to inform you of your rights and responsibilities under the law. Furthermore, they will also provide assistance by conducting research, interviewing witnesses, and engaging in other activities on your behalf.

Depending on the circumstances, your attorney may recommend mediation services. An effective neutral mediator can potentially provide alternative dispute resolution to resolve issues related to copyright infringement. Court cases, as you may be aware, can be time-consuming and expensive, so alternative dispute resolution, when possible, may be advised.

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