How to Copyright Booklets

by Brenna Davis
The copyright symbol can help deter copyright thieves.

The copyright symbol can help deter copyright thieves.

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Copyrights encompass the right to reproduce and sell material you have created or to which you own the rights. Any work you create is copyrighted from the moment you produce it, and you can enforce your rights by sending a cease and desist letter or filing a copyright infringement suit against violators. Registering your booklet through the U.S. Copyright Office provides a public record that your item is copyrighted and owned by you, and can make copyrights easier to document and enforce. A record that you own the copyrights to a booklet can serve as evidence in a lawsuit and makes it impossible for the opposing party to claim that they are the original copyright holder.

Step 1

Download Form TX from the U.S. Copyright Office website and complete the form. You must provide the title, author, date of first publication and information about whether the booklet is a derivative work. Derivative works may be compilations of previously published material or based upon previously published works. If your booklet is a compilation, make sure you have the original authors' permission to publish the booklet if you are not the author of the original material.

Step 2

Pay the filing fee and return the form to the U.S. Copyright Office. The Copyright Office offers a discount for online filers, and if you file online you will receive an e-mail confirmation that your registration has been received. The Copyright Office will notify you when your copyright registration has been accepted and filed in the copyright registry. The wait time is typically several months.

Step 3

Insert a copyright notice in your booklet. Place the copyright symbol on the title page or, if there is no title page, on the front of the booklet. Next to the symbol, write the year the booklet was copyrighted and the name of the person who hold the copyrights. This is normally the booklet author, but if someone ghostwrote the booklet or sold the rights to you, put your name. Then state that no part may be reproduced or copied without your express permission.