How to Register a Copyright in South Carolina?


Copyright registration is a legal process that grants exclusive rights to creators of original works, such as literature, music, and art, to control the use and distribution of their creations. In South Carolina, the process of registering a copyright is handled by the United States Copyright Office, which is a part of the Library of Congress. In this blog, we will discuss the steps involved in registering a copyright in South Carolina in detail, including what types of works are eligible for copyright protection, how to prepare and submit your application, and the benefits of registering your copyright.

Types of Works Eligible for Copyright Protection

In order to register a copyright in South Carolina, the work in question must be original and fixed in a tangible form. Originality means that the work must be independently created by the author and possess at least some minimal degree of creativity. The work must also be fixed in a tangible form, meaning that it must be written down, recorded, or otherwise recorded in a way that it can be reproduced. Some examples of works that are eligible for copyright protection include books, songs, photographs, and films. However, there are certain types of works that are not eligible for copyright protection, such as ideas, facts, and works that have not been fixed in a tangible form. The following types of works are not eligible by copyright protection:
  • Titles, names, short phrases, and slogans
  • Ideas, methods, procedures, systems, concepts, processes, principles, discoveries, or devices
  • Facts, whether recorded or not
  • Works that are not fixed in a tangible form, such as choreography or a performance
  • Works that consist entirely of information that is common property and containing no original authorship, such as standard calendars, height and weight charts, tape measures and lists or tables taken from public documents or other common sources.

Preparing Your Copyright Application

The first step in registering a copyright in South Carolina is to prepare your application. This includes providing detailed information about the work you are registering, such as the title, date of creation, and author. You will also need to provide a copy of the work itself, which can be submitted in the form of a manuscript, recording, or photograph. When preparing your application, it is important to ensure that all of the information provided is accurate and complete. Inaccurate or incomplete information can delay the registration process or result in your application being rejected.

Information Required for the Application

  • Title of the work
  • Name and address of the copyright claimant (author or authors)
  • A brief, general statement of the nature of the work
  • The date of creation and date of first publication (if applicable)
  • Nation of first publication (if applicable)
  • Name and address of the copyright owner (if different from the author)
  • Name and address of the person to whom correspondence regarding the application should be sent
  • A deposit of the work being registered (if applicable)
  • Application fee

Submitting Your Copyright Application

Once your application is prepared, it can be submitted to the United States Copyright Office. The application can be submitted either by mail or online. The online submission process is typically faster and more convenient, but it does require a valid email address and a credit card for payment of the registration fee. The registration fee for copyright registration varies depending on the type of work being registered and whether the application is being submitted online or by mail. In general, the fee for online registration is less than the fee for mail-in registration.

Benefits of Registering Your Copyright

There are several benefits to registering your copyright in South Carolina. The most important benefit is that it provides legal protection for your work, allowing you to take legal action against anyone who infringes on your rights. This includes stopping others from reproducing, distributing, or selling your work without your permission. Another benefit of registering your copyright is that it creates a public record of your ownership. This can be useful in the event that someone else claims to own the rights to your work. Having a registered copyright can also serve as evidence in a court of law, which can help to strengthen your case in the event of a legal dispute. Additionally, registering your copyright can also help to increase the value of your work. This is because registered copyrights are often considered more valuable than unregistered ones, as they provide additional legal protections and can be used as evidence of ownership. Lastly, copyright registration is a prerequisite for certain remedies in copyright infringement suits, such as statutory damages, and attorney's fees, which can be substantial.


Registering a copyright in South Carolina is an important step for creators of original works, such as literature, music, and art. The process involves preparing and submitting an application to the United States Copyright Office, which includes providing detailed information about the work being registered, as well as a copy of the work itself. The benefits of registering your copyright include legal protection, creating a public record of your ownership, and increasing the value of your work. By following the steps outlined in this blog, you can ensure that your work is properly protected and safeguarded.