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Pastor, Church & Law

written by Richard R. Hammar, J.D., LL.M., CPA

Duration of Copyright Protection

Volume 4 . Chapter 9 . § 9-05.05
Key point 9-05.05. The copyright term for most works created after 1977 is the life of the author plus 70 years. The term for works published prior to 1978, and in their initial or renewal copyright term as of October 27, 1998, is 95 years from the date of the original copyright.

A copyright does not last for an indefinite or unlimited time. The provision in the United States Constitution giving Congress authority to create copyright protection specifies that such protection shall be only "for limited times." The "limited times" vary depending upon the circumstances. Under the copyright law that was in effect before 1978, copyright was secured either on the date a work was published (with an appropriate copyright notice), or on the date of registration ...

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