Help: Copyright Claimant

Basic Information

Please identify all known copyright claimant(s) in this work. The author is the original claimant and may always be listed as a claimant, even after the author has transferred rights in the work. The claimant may also be a person or organization to whom copyright has been legally transferred. To be named as a claimant by means of a transfer, a person or organization must own all rights under the U.S. copyright law; ownership of only some of the rights is not sufficient. In addition, a claimant must own the copyright in all of the authorship covered by this regulation.

Doing Business As

If the claimant is doing business under another name and as long as the two names represent one and the same entity (such as an unincorporated organization), give this information in a “Note to Copyright Office” on the Certification screen. The relationship may also be expressed as “trading as,” “sole owner of,” “also known as,” and “acceptable alternative designation.” Note: Do not refer to a relationship between an individual and a corporation or partnership; such organizations are separate legal entities from individuals associated with them. Thus, “John Smith doing business as XYZ Corporation” is not an acceptable entry.

Transfer of All Rights

A person or organization that is not an author may be named as claimant only if the copyright ownership of all rights was acquired in writing or by operation of law. Written transfers must be signed by the party transferring the copyright or his authorized agent. In addition, copyright ownership may be transferred by the provisions of a will or by operation of law other than by inheritance, for example, by operations of state community property law.

Owner(s) of All Authorship

Do not name as “claimant” someone who owns the copyright in only part of the authorship being claimed. Copyright claimants may not combine their separate claims on a single application form. This may be an issue for

Transfer Statement

Transfer information is required if this claimant is not an author. Please indicate how copyright ownership was acquired by this claimant. “By written agreement” includes “by assignment” or “by contract.” “By inheritance” (which may be “by will” or “by intestate succession”) applies only if the person from whom copyright was transferred is deceased. If necessary, select “Other” and give a brief statement explaining how copyright was transferred. If the transfer is by operation of law other than by inheritance, select “Other” and state the means, for example, “by operation of state community property law”.

Transfer Statement for Single Serial Issue

Five transfer statements are offered from which you should pick the one appropriate to your situation, if applicable.   

If you elect to name all of the individual contributors to the collective work as authors on the application, and the rights to those contributions were transferred to the claimant, you would pick the first option.

If you elect not to name individual contributors as authors but still wish to claim contributions wherein the rights were transferred to the claimant, you would pick the second option. If you elect to name some but not all of the individual contributors to the collective work as authors, and the rights to those contributions were transferred to the claimant, you would pick the third option.

NOTE: If both compilation and contributions are being registered and the rights to both were transferred to a non-author as claimant, you would pick the first or third option.

If none of these options apply, you may select “other” and provide the specifics in the space provided.  Please note, a transfer statement must include the manner in which rights were transferred (e.g. by assignment, by contract, etc.).