Copyright Duration

How long does a copyright last?

For works originally created on or after January 01, 1978, the duration of copyright protection is for a term for the author’s life plus 70 years after the author’s death.

For works made for hire, or for an anonymous work, the duration of copyright protection is 95 years from publication or 120 years from creation, whichever expires first.

For joint works, prepared by two or more authors and was not a work made for hire, the term lasts for 70 years after the last surviving author’s death.

Expired copyrights

For all U. S. works registered or published prior to 1923 the copyrights have expired. As a result, all
such works have entered into the public domain.



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