Copyright Registration in China

If you want to register a copyright in China, you should understand the rules, registration process, and the documents needed. Copyright is the exclusive right granted by the law to authors for the creation of literary, artistic and scientific works, etc. According to Chinese Copyright law, there are three main types of copyright. That is software copyright, the copyright of the works, and the Digital Copyright Identifier (DCI).  This means that Works Copyright refers to the intellectual achievements that are original in the fields of literature, art, and science can be copied in a tangible form. 

In China, Foreign Legal representatives, Foreign citizens, and other organizations have the right to apply for Copyright. To some extent, the registration process is complicated for them. For example, you need to provide content translation in Chinese and the relevant documents through certification or notarization, etc.

Our professional Attorney will perform a check on the availability of the Works and provide you with an Analysis Report. After that, we can complete a series of steps on your behalf to protect Copyright in China.

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CHOOSING A COPYRIGHT

Computer Software Copyright

The Computer Software refers to computer programs and related documents. The Computer Program refers to a sequence of coded instructions or a sequence of symbolic statements that can achieve a certain function. Furthermore, the documents refer to the text materials and charts used to describe the content, composition, design, functional specifications, development, test results and use methods of the program, such as program design instructions, flow charts, operation manuals, etc.

Copyright of Works

Works Copyright refers to the intellectual achievements that are original in the fields of literature, art, and science and can be copied in a tangible form. Generally, China Copyright protects works of literature, art, sciences, engineering, and technology created in any form of written, oral, musical, dramatic, choreographic and acrobatic works, fine arts and architecture, photographic works, cinematographic works, graphic works, etc.

COPYRIGHT REGISTRATION PROCEDURE

  1. Application Preparation

    2 to 3 Working Days

    Our attorney will plan to apply the copyright registration by fiiling the application form. You will need to send us an authorization letter and the legal certifying documents that we will be able to file the application for you.

  2. Application Filing

    30 to 45 Working Days

    After having received all the documents as submitted under the Regulations of China Copyright Law, Our attorney will file your registration application along with the supporting documents. The China Copyright Protection Center (CCPC) will issue to the applicant a Notification of Acceptance of Copyright Registration. Upon successful filing, The application date of Copyright Registration shall be subject to the date when the Trademark Office receives the application.

  3. Government Approval

    1 Working Day

    Upon the examination, once the Copyright gets registered and announced, you will receive the Certificate of Copyright from the China Copyright Protection Center (CCPC).

DOCUMENTS REQUIRED FOR COPYRIGHT

Passport

If the copyright owner is a foreign natural person, you need to provide the photocopy of a valid passport, the Chinese translation of the copy of the passport with the signature of the translator.

ID Proof

If the copyright owner is a Foreign legal representative or other organizations, you need to provide the Certificate of Business legal representative and legal documents, and both should be notarized by local, state, national registration office or authentication department and then be authenticated by the Chinese Embassy or consulate.

Works

For the Computer Software Copyright, the source program and documents shall be submitted in First and Last 30 consecutive pages, and if the pages less than 60 pages shall be submitted in full version. For the Works Copyright Registration, we need the Samples of works and the description of the work, please write the description in terms of the purpose, process and originality of the work, and attachment the applicant's signature and date.

WHAT DO YOU RECEIVE

What will you receive after Copyright Registration

Copyright Certificate

The different China Copyright Certificates include computer software, literature art, natural sciences, social science, musical, dramatic, photographic work, novel, arts, graphic works, film and television works, business plan, engineering work, etc.

Frequently Asked Questions about Copyright Registration

What are the Works?

In China, copyright refers to the intellectual achievements that are original in the fields of literature, art, and science and can be copied in a tangible form. The work should meet the following conditions:
(1) Originality. That is, the work must be independently conceived and created by the author. Only original works are protected by copyright law.
(2) Reproducibility. That is, one or more copies of the work can be made by printing, copying, rubbing, recording, video, ripping, reverse shooting, etc. But no matter what copying method is used and how many works are copied, none will change the content of the work.


What is the CCPC (China Copyright Protection Center)?

The China Copyright Protection Center (CCPC) is the only comprehensive national copyright public service agency in China, which is responsible for the copyright registration of works in China, Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan, and overseas.

How do foreigners or units apply for copyright registration of works?

Applying for copyright registration of works in China, the foreigners or units are in accordance with the principle of national treatment, which is consistent with the registration materials required by Chinese citizens. Foreign language materials must be submitted in Chinese (except for sample works).


What is the processing time limit for copyright registration of works?

 It will be completed within 30 working days after the registration agency accepts the registration application. If correction materials are needed, the applicant shall complete the correction within 60 days after receiving the correction notice, and the registration agency shall complete the correction within 30 working days after receiving the correction materials.


What is Computer Software?

It refers to computer programs and related documents.

A computer program refers to a sequence of coded instructions or a sequence of symbolic statements that can achieve a certain function.


Who can be the Computer Software copyright owner?

Natural persons, legal persons, or other organizations that independently develop and complete software, as well as natural persons, legal persons, or other organizations that have contracted, inherited, transferred, or accepted Computer Software copyrights can become copyright owners.


Computer Software 1.0 has been registered, do I need to register again for the upgraded version?

Different versions are different Computer Software works, upgrade software with major changes in Computer Software functions and performance, applicants should re-register if necessary.


 What is the exclusive license of Computer Software copyright?

It refers to the right that the software copyright owner, within a specific period and geographical area, authorizes the licensee to use one or more of the rights it enjoys. That is to say, the right is exclusive, no one else (including the licensor) can use it except for the licensee.


Which works can be applied for registration?

China Copyright Law protects works of:

  • literature; art;
  • natural sciences;
  • social sciences;
  • engineering and technology created in any forms of written, oral, musical, dramatic, choreographic, and acrobatic works;
  • works of fine arts and architecture;
  • photographic works;
  • cinematographic works;
  • graphic works;
  • computer software;
  • and other works by law (Article 3).

Which works cannot be applied for Copyright registration?

According to China Copyright Law, the following cannot be applied for Copyright:

  • Laws, regulations, state organs’ resolutions, decisions, orders, and other documents with legislative, administrative, judicial nature, and their official translations;
  • Current news;
  • Calendar, general number table, general table and formula;
  • Works beyond the protection period.

What materials do I need to submit to apply for registration of copyright-related rights matters?

  • Application Form for Registration of Rights Related to Copyright;
  • Applicant’s identification document:
  • Proof of ownership of rights;
  •  Samples of sound recordings, video products, layout designs, and materials that record performances, broadcasts, or TV content;
  • When entrusting others to apply on behalf of the agent, the agent shall submit the applicant’s certificate of authorization and agent identification documents.

What is the duration of Computer Software copyright protection?

The copyright of a natural person’s software is protected for the lifetime of the natural person and 50 years after his death. If Computer Software is developed in cooperation. The protection ends on December 31 of the 50th year after the death of the last natural person. The Computer Software copyright of legal persons or other organizations shall be protected for 50 years after the first publication of the Computer Software. However, if the Computer Software has not been published within 50 years from the date of completion of development, it will no longer be protected.


If one of the right holders who succeeded in obtaining the right is a foreign legal person, how to submit the identity certificate?

Provide a copy of the registration of its legal person. After notarization by a local qualified institution, it must be certified by the Chinese embassy or consulate in that country. The notarization includes two aspects: one is that the company is legally and effectively established; the other is that the signature of the company’s legal person is valid. If one of the parties is a legal person in Taiwan, you need to fill in the Taiwan legal person registration certificate and notarize it in a qualified court in Taiwan.