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Copyright Law Solicitors

At Saunders Law, our copyright lawyers have substantial experience in advising a diverse range of individuals and businesses on their rights, options and obligations in relation to copyright.

Our copyright solicitors in London recognise just how valuable copyright and other intellectual property rights are, as well as the importance of ensuring that they are properly managed and protected. Our aim to provide practical, commercially sound advice with the aim of achieving a swift resolution.

As a firm, we have developed a strong reputation for our successful work in this field and are well regarded for our ability to tirelessly fight our client’s corner where copyright issues arise.

Where disputes involving copyright issues result in litigation being the only step forward, we are able to use a robust yet discrete approach to defend our client’s interests. We also offer various funding options for our clients, and we will always make sure to work as cost-effectively as possible.

Our copyright law expertise includes matters involving:

  • Copyright ownership
  • Copyright infringement
  • Defending parties accused of copyright infringement
  • Copyright assignments
  • Copyright license agreements

Operating from offices in the City of London, our media law solicitors also have a wide range of expertise in other related matters, including in relation to intellectual property disputes, trademark infringements and NFT disputes.

Find out more about the firm, its teams and its typical work by taking a look at our clients.

Speak to our copyright lawyers in London

For expert assistance with copyright law or any related other areas of media law, contact Saunders Law today for a free, no obligation initial discussion of how we may be able to help.

Call us on 0207 632 4300 or make an enquiry online.

Why work with our copyright solicitors?

More than 40 years’ experience

At Saunders Law, our partner-led team have more than 40 years of combined knowledge and expertise. We use our experience to support and advise our clients on a variety of copyright law matters, including those relating to copyright infringement and disputes. We always make sure to take reputational matters into careful consideration when providing legal advice in this field and, as such, hold an excellent track record of successfully protecting our clients’ interests.

Independently recognised expertise

Our UK copyright solicitors have been independently recognised for our market-leading expertise, with strong rankings in highly respected client guides, the Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners to reflect this.

Our copyright team is headed by Will Charlesworth, who is also independently recognised for his copyright law expertise in the Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners.

Commercially minded approach to match our clients’ priorities

No matter what the circumstances may be and what the copyright relates to, we always ensure to carefully plan our strategy and advice around our client’s priorities. We have strong skills in both out of court settlements and litigation for disputes involving copyright issues, which means that we will always take the most appropriate approach based on your specific needs.

Exceptional personal service & client satisfaction

Our copyright solicitors in London pride ourselves on always delivering exceptional service. Our clients will always receive a call back on the same day following an enquiry and will be able to speak to one of our partners whenever required. We consistently achieve excellent feedback from our clients.

Examples of our successful copyright law work

  • Acting on behalf of a global public sector strategy consultancy against copyright infringers in multiple jurisdictions.
  • Advising a crypto currency as to the enforcement of its IP rights and the resolution of litigation surrounding a funding white paper.
  • Advising a London-Turkish joint venture technology start-up in respect of its IP rights in the dissolution of a ‘blockchain’ technology platform venture.
  • Acting for a UK based software company against a leading US bank in a copyright and database rights infringement claim concerning the creation of bespoke and highly complex financial analytical software.

How we can support with copyright law matters

Copyright ownership

Understanding how copyright ownership works and who has ownership of a specific piece of work can often prove to be a complex process – especially where ownership has previously changed hands, has been sold, or is related to international copyright law.

Where you are looking to establish where you stand in relation to copyright ownership, it is critical to instruct the right legal support without delay. Our team can work alongside you to establish who has copyright ownership and, by extension, who is permitted to use the work in question.

In situations where our team are able to establish that you own the copyright to a piece of work and it has been used by another party without your permission, we can then help to protect your commercial interests by advising on the processes related to copyright infringement.

Copyright infringement

In practice, copyright should protect your work from being copied, distributed, adapted, monetised or performed.

Our UK copyright solicitors can work alongside you to advise on the best approach to take and what the next steps should be where copyright infringement has taken place. Every case is unique, which means there is no ‘one size fits all’ type of approach to these matters.

Our team can correspond with the party or parties who have been responsible for the copyright infringement, setting out the legal position and actions that should be taken to avoid the potential for litigation.

However, where your copyright has been exploited or infringed, we can correspond with the party or parties responsible for the copyright infringement, setting out the legal positions and actions that need to be taken to find a resolution. Where a voluntary agreement cannot be reached, it may be possible to issue proceedings at the Intellectual Property and Enterprise Court or take alternative enforcement action.

Defending parties accused of copyright infringement

Equally, our expert copyright law solicitors are there for those who are defending a copyright infringement claim. In these situations, it is incredibly important to analyse and address the particulars of a claim without delay, especially if the other party is willing to take enforcement action.

Our team can critically analyse the situation to assess whether a copyright claim has been properly made or not and whether the presence of assignments or license agreements may have an effect on the ability to use a copyright protected piece of work in a specific way.

Given the nature of these disputes, there is no underestimating the value of prompt legal advice from the outset. This can maximise the chances of reaching a favourable outcome.

Copyright assignments

It may be the case that you wish to transfer the ownership of copyright, either by sale or by gift. To do so, a written, signed contract stating the transfer needs to take place, which is known as an assignment.

Our copyright lawyers can talk you through the process of assignment, helping you to establish whether you would wish to carry out an elective or partial assignment, as well as discussing the potential legal implications and consequences of each approach.

Copyright license agreements

A copyright license agreement can be used to regulate how others use your copyright protected work. In practice, they can be used to outline details such as whether you will be compensated for the use of the copyright, the designated purpose of the copyright and the length of the agreement.

When used correctly, copyright license agreements can be used to prevent and mitigate disputes. Our copyright solicitors in London can advise you in relation to the creation of license agreements, ensuring that your rights are fully protected and that there are no details which could otherwise be exploited by another party.

We can also support you where a license agreement needs to be updated to reflect a change in circumstances or where you have reason to believe that another party has breached the terms of an agreement.

Frequently asked questions about copyright law

What is copyright law in the UK?

Put simply, copyright law in the UK protects your work and prevent others from using it without your permission. You will gain automatic copyright protection when you create certain work, and it is not necessary to make an application or pay a fee.

Copyright protection is granted when you create:

  • Literary, dramatic, musical and artistic work
  • Non-literary work such as software and web content
  • Sound and music recordings
  • Film and television recordings
  • Broadcasts
  • The layout of published editions of written, dramatic and musical works

Copyright law in the UK prevents anyone from copying, distributing, renting copies, performing or making an adaptation of your work.

How long does copyright last?

Copyright is not permanent. However, there are different timescales to keep in mind for different types of work.

The following copyright time limits apply in the UK (international copyright law will vary):

  • Written, dramatic, musical and artistic work – 70 years after the author’s death
  • Sound and music recording – 70 years from when it is first published
  • Films – 70 years after the death of the director, screenplay author and composer
  • Broadcasts – 50 years from when it is first broadcast
  • Layouts of published editions of written, dramatic, or musical works – 25 years from when it is first published

What is fair use under copyright law?

Fair use is a term that is typically used in the United States, which is often used to describe cases where permission is not required to be sought from a copyright owner for the reproduction of the work. In the UK, the term ‘fair dealing’ is used to describe the same process.

Fair dealing may allow for works to be reproduced for specific purposes – but will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Common examples of fair dealing in action may include:

  • Quotation
  • Criticism or review
  • Educational use
  • Non-commercial research or study
  • Non-commercial data mining
  • Parody or caricature

Again, it is important to emphasise that these may be an example of fair dealing. There is no solid rule in this area, and it may come down to the judgement of the Intellectual Property and Enterprise Court.

Speak to our copyright lawyers in London

For expert assistance with copyright law or any related other areas of media law, contact Saunders Law today for a free, no obligation initial discussion of how we may be able to help.

Call us on 020 7632 4300 or make an enquiry online.