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  • Intellectual property framework

    Overview

    Protection of intellectual property rights is required by the Federal Constitution and by several multilateral treaties. The main statutes in this area are federal statutes. However, in case of litigation, some matters are subject to federal jurisdiction, and others to provincial jurisdiction.

  • Commercial contract framework

    Overview

    Commercial contracts are governed by the Civil and Commercial Code. This code came into effect in 2015 and it replaces the previous separate Civil Code and Commercial Code. It is part of the federal legislation, but jurisdiction regarding its implementation and litigation resulting thereunder corresponds primarily to the provincial courts.

    The Civil and Commercial Code includes general provisions on contracts, which are applicable to all contractual transactions. These provisions govern matters such as the formation of contracts, offer and acceptance, possible subject matter of contracts, legal formalities, the legal effects of contracts, contract termination and others.

    In addition, the Civil and Commercial Code includes provisions applicable to specific types of contracts, such as sale agreements, leases, franchise agreements and agency agreements. More than 30 types of agreements are subject to specific provisions of this kind. These specially regulated agreements are thus subject to the general rules applicable to contracts –described above – and to the special rules applicable to the relevant type of agreement. Agreements that are not subject to special rules are nevertheless valid, and they are governed primarily by the general contract rules and – to the degree possible – by the rules applicable to analogous specially regulated contracts.

    Other laws include provisions on specific types of commercial contracts. For instance, the Copyright Law includes certain provisions of contracts related to software and to publishing; the Patent Law includes rules on license agreements; and the Insurance Law includes rules on insurance contracts. However, in all these specially regulated contracts, the general contract law rules included in the Civil and Commercial Code are also applicable.

    Commercial contracts with the federal or provincial governments or with other governmental entities are also governed by administrative law. Special rules on contracts with state entities have been included in federal or provincial laws, or have been developed by case law.

  • Copyrights

    Nature of right

    Copyright protects intellectual creations in all fields of science, art and literature. Article 1 of the Copyright Law includes a non-exhaustive list of possible intellectual works protected by copyright. These include, among others, literary and artistic works, music, architectural works and software.

    Copyright protects intellectual expressions, but not ideas. For example, the contents of a book in terms of sentences and other literary expressions are protected by copyright, but the creative idea underlying the book as a whole is not.

    Copyright results from the creation of an intellectual work. Registration is not necessary for copyright to exist, although it is necessary for the exercise of some rights by local authors. Upon creation of a protected work, copyright belongs to the original author or authors, who then may transfer their right, by contract or by the operation of certain legal rules.

    Copyright includes economic and moral rights. Economic rights consist, basically, in the exclusive right to use and exploit the protected work. The Copyright Law lists some of the elements of this exclusive right, such as the right to reproduce the relevant work, to market copies, to prepare derivative works or to have the work performed publicly.

    Moral rights include the so call "integrity right" – that is, the right to preserve the text, title and other contents of the work, even if property rights on such work have been assigned; the "paternity right," the author’s right to be named and identified as such together with the work; the "publication right," the right to decide whether the right will be published; and the "alteration right," the right to modify the work, even after it has been published. Moral rights belong to the author and they are generally non-assignable.

    Legal framework

    Copyright law is included in Law 11, 723, as amended. In addition, multiple laws and regulations govern matters such as related rights, publishers' rights and collective management societies.

    Argentina is part of the main multilateral international copyright agreements, such as the Trips Agreement, the Berne Convention and the Rome Convention. The provisions of these agreements are actively enforced by the courts.

    Duration of right

    The general rule is that copyright protection lasts for a term of seventy years, counted as of January 1 of the first year after the death of the author, as well as through the life of the author.

    In the case of work done through cooperation, the 70-year term is computed from the death of the last person who participated in the joint authorship of the work involved.

    In the case of posthumous works, the 70-year term is computed from the death of the author.

    The duration of protection of anonymous works whose copyright belongs to institutions, corporations or legal entities is 50 years from the date of publication of the work.

    Special rules on copyright duration apply to specific types of copyrightable works, such as photographs and cinematographic works.

    Ownership / licenses

    The basic rule is that ownership belongs to the author. Special rules have been developed in connection with special types of works, such as cinematographic works, derivative works and software.

    There are several types of joint ownership. It may apply to works done through cooperation, which imply a creative collaboration between different authors; to collective works, which are those created through the initiative or direction of one or more individuals, who coordinate or direct the efforts of several other individuals to achieve a joint result; and to composite works, which are the result of adding different separate works, each with a possible separate author and owner, into one final result.

    Works created by employees who have been hired for that purpose belong to the employer.

    Copyright may be subject to licenses, generally as part of broader contractual arrangements such as publishing agreements.

    Remedies for infringement

    Damages may be claimed before civil courts for all types of copyright violation. Registration of works is not necessary, except for local authors, whose rights may be suspended until registration takes place.

    It is also possible to file civil action to prevent further copyright violation, and to obtain preliminary remedies, such as injunction, in the course of civil procedures.

    Criminal remedies, particularly fines, are possible, but are not frequently applied.

  • Mask works / topographies

    Nature of right

    Mask works and topographies are not separately protected under Argentine law. They may be protected under patent law or by way of confidentiality.

    Legal framework

    Argentina has enacted no specific rules on chip protection. Although Argentina is part of the WTO and has approved the Trips Agreement, it has not yet implemented any rules on chip protection.

    The provisions on chip protection included in the Trips Agreement have not been deemed immediately applicable under Argentine law. In addition, Argentina has not ratified or implemented other multilateral treaties on chip protection, in particular the Treaty of Washington of 1989.

    Semiconductor technology, generally, and topographies, in particular, may be protected under the traditional intellectual property rules applicable to all types of technology, specially patent law and the rules on confidential information. Therefore, matters such as the duration of the relevant rights, ownership and remedies depend on the type of protection used in connection with each specific mask work or topography.

    Duration of right

    Not applicable for this jurisdiction.

    Ownership / licenses

     Not applicable for this jurisdiction.

    Remedies for infringement

    Not applicable for this jurisdiction.

  • Patents

    Nature of right

    Patents are a statutory right. The granting of patents is required by the Argentine Constitution and by different international documents, particularly the Trips Agreement. Patent rights imply an exclusive right to exploit a process or a product. The Argentine Patent Law defines the limits of these exclusive rights, on the basis of the provisions of the Trips Agreement.

    Legal framework

    Patents are governed by the Patent Law – Law 24,481, as amended. In addition, they are governed by the Trips Agreement and by the Paris Convention. Argentina is not a party to the Patent Cooperation Treaty.

    Duration of right

    The basic rule is that patents expire 20 years after the date in which the relevant patent application was filed. Argentina uses a "first to file" system, but it also applies the priority rules derived from the Paris Convention.

    Argentine law provides special rules on compulsory licenses and on patent termination due to lack of exploitation of the patented invention. Compulsory licenses may be granted in case of non-exploitation, competition law violations or sanitary emergencies, among other cases. Patent termination may result when, after a compulsory license was granted for lack of exploitation, no exploitation of the invention takes place for two years after the license was granted.

    Ownership / licenses

    Joint ownership is permissible. The Patent Law includes provisions on the exercise of patent rights by the joint owners. In addition the Civil and Commercial Code rules on joint property apply to patents.

    The Patent law includes rules on licenses. Licenses are not exclusive, unless the parties provide otherwise. Competition law rules are applicable to restrictive clauses included in license agreements.

    Remedies for infringement

    The Patent law provides both civil and criminal law remedies for cases of infringement.

    Civil remedies include the compensation of damages and termination of the infringing activities.

    A complex system of rules for preliminary remedies in patent cases is included in the Patent law. Generally, suspension of an alleged infringer's exploitation requires a preliminary procedure, with the participation of expert witnesses.

    Criminal procedures and sanctions are rare.

  • Trademarks

    Nature of right

    A trademark may consist of one or more words, with or without conceptual content, drawings, commercial symbols, monograms, engravings, prints, seals, images, stripes, color combinations, letter and number combinations, the special graphics of letters and numbers, advertisement phrases, reliefs, and any other sign with distinctive capacity.

    A trademark is normally protected by means of its registration. However, de facto trademarks, that is those that are used but not registered, are also protected in a more limited way.

    Legal framework

    Trademarks are governed by the Trademark Law – Law 22,362, as amended.

    In addition, trademarks are protected by the rules included in Trips Agreement and in the Paris Convention.

    Duration of right

    Registered trademarks are protected for a period of ten years, from the moment of registration. Trademark registration may be renewed indefinitely.

    Registration may be cancelled for lack of use during a period of five years. In addition, renewal of registration requires proof of the trademark's prior use.

    Ownership / licenses

    Ownership is acquired by means of registration. However, use of unregistered trademarks may result in certain rights for the user.

    Trademarks may be subject to joint ownership. The Trademark Law and the Civil and Commercial Code provide the rules applicable to these joint ownership relationships.

    Trademark licenses are possible. They are valid even if they are not registered with the trademark office.

    Remedies for infringement

    The Trademark Law provides both civil and criminal law remedies for cases of infringement.

    Civil remedies include the compensation of damages and the termination of the infringing activities.

    Special preliminary remedies are applicable in cases of trademark infringement. The trademark owner may obtain an injunction against the infringer, when the trademark is registered and its violation is immediately evident.

    Criminal law remedies are rarely used in practice.

  • Trade secrets

    Nature of right

    Argentine law provides protection for trade secrets and confidential information. A complex set of rules creates rights against conduct whereby access is gained illegally to confidential information, or which implies illegal use of trade secrets or confidential information or which results in the unauthorized and harmful disclosure of confidential or secret information.

    Confidential information is characterized by the fact that it is kept in a reserved manner and that it is not generally available for technicians working in the relevant technical field. Trade secrets receive a special degree of protection, particularly under criminal law.

    Legal framework

    Confidential information is governed and protected by Law 24,766. It is also protected by the Trips Agreement and by the Paris Convention.

    In addition, multiple rules and statutes protect confidential information and trade secrets. Labor law protects the confidentiality and ownership of information used in employment relationships.

    Several criminal law rules apply to special types of violations of confidentiality. In particular, disclosure of trade secrets and unfair competition by means of the illegal use or appropriation of trade secrets are subject to criminal law penalties.

    Duration of right

    Confidential information and trade secrets is protected for as long as the relevant information is kept confidential. The degree of protection diminishes if the information ceases to be objectively a secret, due to its previous disclosure or because it has been obtained independently by other parties.

    Ownership / licenses

    Ownership results from the obtention of the information, accompanied by legal or practical measures aimed at restricting access to that information by third parties. No registration requirement is applicable.

    Joint ownership is possible.

    Trade secret or know-how licenses are common and enforceable.

    Remedies for infringement

    Argentine law provides civil and criminal law remedies for cases of trade secret infringement.

    Damages caused by these violations must be compensated. It is also possible to obtain court orders requiring termination of the violation.

    Preliminary remedies include injunctions against further exploitation or disclosure of trade secrets.

    Criminal remedies are applicable in cases of disclosure of trade secrets acquired in the course of employment and other professional relationship, as well as in cases in which the violation of the rights to confidential information or trade secrets results in unfair competition.

  • Other key IP rights

    Nature of right

    Industrial designs

    Industrial models and designs are protected by special industrial property rights. An industrial model or design consists in the forms embodied in or the aspect applied to an industrial or artisan product, which confer an ornamental character to such product.

    Exclusive rights on industrial models and designs result from registration of the relevant model or design.

    Industrial designs

    Industrial designs

    Legal framework

    Industrial designs

    Industrial models and designs are protected by Decree 6673/1963, as amended. They are also protected in accordance with the Trips Agreement and the Paris Convention.

    Duration of right

    Industrial designs

    The rights derived from the registration of an industrial model or design last for a five-year period, counted from the date of filing of the relevant application. The registration may be renewed for two successive five-year period, if the owner requests such renewal.

    Ownership / licenses

    Industrial designs

    Ownership belongs to the author. There is a rebuttable presumption to the effect that the first applicant of an industrial model or design registration is the author of such industrial model or design. Joint ownership is possible, and is governed by the Civil and Commercial Code and by Decree 6673/1963 as amended.

    Industrial models or designs may be the subject matter of license agreements. No registration is necessary for the validity of these agreements.

    Remedies for infringement

    Industrial designs

    Civil and criminal law remedies are applicable in case of infringement. Civil remedies include the compensation of damages and termination of the violation.

    Preliminary injunctions and remedies are possible in accordance with general procedural rules.

    Criminal sanctions have been recently reinforced, but they are rarely applied.

  • Intellectual property in employment context

    Employees

    Special rules on employee inventions are included in the Patent Law and in the Labor Contract Law.

    There are basically three types of invention, from the perspective of employer-employee relationships. First, inventions made in technological areas for which the employee was hired as a researcher or developer belong to the employer. The employee may be entitled to a special compensation if he or she develops a patented invention which exceeds the normal scope of the employee's work. Second, inventions related to the employee's work or related to the employer's know-how or activities belong to the employee, but allow the employer to exercise an option to acquire rights over the invention. If the option is exercised, the employee is entitled to a payment reflecting the value of the invention. Third, inventions that do not fall into the two previous categories belong to the employee.

    Similar rules are applicable in the case of other types of technology or intellectual property rights. In the case of software, the law applies the “work for hire” doctrine, but allows the parties to agree to different contractual rules.

    Consultants / contractors

    The law is not explicit about the rights of consultants and contractors, who do not qualify as employees, with regard to technology and other intellectual property they develop. Generally, the parties may agree as to the rules which will apply to such rights. In the absence of a contractual framework, the technology or intellectual property generated by a consultant or contractor who was hired with the purpose of developing such items that will belong to the person paying for such work.

  • Key commercial contract considerations

    Registration of commercial agreements

    The general rule is that commercial agreements are not registered, and that their validity and effect is not subject to registration requirements. However, certain types of agreement must be registered to be effective or to have full effects against third parties. Agreements subject to registration include business association agreements, certain publishing agreements, certain chattel mortgages and certain agreements related to real estate. International transfer of technology agreements are subject to registration for tax purposes.

    Recognized language of commercial agreements

    Agreements are generally entered in Spanish. However, it is legally possible to enter agreements written in other languages. These agreements must be translated when presented in court. Spanish language may be necessary in consumer transactions.

    Country-specific issues for online content

    Argentina has ratified the WIPO conventions applicable online content and practices. However, enforcement of these conventions is weak.

    Enforceability of online/clickwrap/shrinkwrap terms

    The general rule is that acceptance of terms included in online, click wrap or shrink wrap elements is valid and effective, provided such acceptance is clearly stated and applies to terms that were known to the person giving the acceptance. However, several rules may limit the effects of agreements entered by these mechanisms, particularly consumer protection rules and rules on adhesion contracts.

    Governing law

    The basic rule is that the parties may agree as to the law that will govern their contractual rights and as to the applicable jurisdiction in case of dispute. This freedom of election is subject to several limitations. Non-Argentine law will not be enforced in Argentine courts if it  is contrary to Argentine public policy. Also, certain matters are necessarily governed by Argentine law. For example, if a business association is created in Argentina, its organization and other corporate aspects will be governed by Argentine law. Decisions made by non-Argentine courts or arbitration tribunals are enforceable in Argentina only after going through a special procedure before the Argentine courts, in the context of which the decision will only be enforced if it complies with certain rules, particularly not violating Argentine public policy. In addition, certain matters – ie, deciding the validity of a patent issued in Argentina – are necessarily subject to Argentine jurisdiction.

  • Key commercial contract terms

    Enforceability of warranty disclaimers

    Argentine law provides certain warranties, generally applicable to all types of contracts implying the transfer of rights. These warranties apply, in particular, to the validity of the rights being transferred and to the fitness of the goods regarding which rights are transferred.

    The general rule is that these warranties may be limited or eliminated by agreement between the parties. However, these disclaimers are totally or partially invalid in several types of cases: if the transferor had prior knowledge of the invalidity of the transferred rights or of the deficiency of the goods involved; if the transferor is a merchant and the parties waiving his or her rights are not; and if the warranty disclaimer is included in a consumer or adhesion contract.

    Enforceability of exclusions/limitations of liability indemnification

    Exclusions or limitations of liability indemnification are valid if they meet the general conditions applicable to contractual. However, they may be unenforceable in the following cases: when they extend to willful violations or defaults, or to violations or defaults resulting from gross negligence; when they are imposed in adhesion or consumer contracts; or when they result in the violation or annulment of rights that may not be removed or limited contractually.

    Indemnification

    The basic rule under Argentine law if full indemnification of economic or moral damages caused by illegal conduct, whether that conduct constitutes a contractual or a tort violation.

    The parties are free to include contractual rules as to the extent of their indemnification obligations.

    Penalty clauses and liquidated damages clauses are acceptable, but they may be limited or amended by the courts if their terms are deemed abusive.

    In the absence of contractual provisions, the indemnification's extent will depend on circumstances such as the willful or negligent nature of the violation, foreseeability of the damages caused and the comparative fault of the parties.

    Electronic signatures

    Electronic signatures are valid and effective under Argentine law. However, certain legal effects require that the signature comply with a special certification regime.

  • Key contacts
    Guillermo Cabanellas
    Guillermo Cabanellas
    Senior Partner DLA Piper (Argentina) [email protected] T +5411 41145500 View bio

Copyrights

Legal framework

Argentina

Copyright law is included in Law 11, 723, as amended. In addition, multiple laws and regulations govern matters such as related rights, publishers' rights and collective management societies.

Argentina is part of the main multilateral international copyright agreements, such as the Trips Agreement, the Berne Convention and the Rome Convention. The provisions of these agreements are actively enforced by the courts.

Australia

Copyrights are governed by the Copyright Act 1968 (Copyright Act). There is no state-based copyright law and there is no common law of copyright, but there are court judgments that impact the interpretation of the Copyright Act. The Copyright Act provides for moral rights for original works and subject matter other than works except for sound recordings, sound and television broadcasts and published editions. It also provides performers' rights for performances.

Australia is a party to the Berne Convention, the TRIPS Agreement, WIPO Copyright Treaty and the WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty and the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement.

Austria

Copyrights are governed by the Copyright Act, which also implements various EU directives.

Austria is also a party to a number of international treaties (including the WIPO Copyright Treaty and the TRIPS Agreement).

Belgium

Copyrights in Belgium are governed by Title 5 (Copyrights and Neighboring Rights) of Book XI (Intellectual Property and Trade Secrets) of the Code of Economic Law.

Brazil

Copyrights are governed by the Federal Constitution (Article 5, XXVII), Federal Law 9,609/98 (Software Law) and Federal Law 9,610/98 (Rights of Authorship Law).

Moral rights are recognized under the Brazilian Rights of Authorship Law.

Brazil became signatory to Berne Convention in 1922.

Canada

The Canadian Copyright Act protects both copyright and moral rights and there is no copyright outside the statutory framework.

Canada became a signatory to the Berne Convention in 1928.

Chile

Chilean Constitution, Law No 17,336 on Intellectual Property, Berne Convention and the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS).

China

The PRC Copyright Law and its Implementing Regulations are primary legislations in China concerning copyright protection. In addition, there are Regulations on Protection of Computer Software; judicial interpretations issued by the Supreme People's Court also provide detailed rules in respect of application of the Copyright Law.

China became a signatory to the Berne Convention and Universal Copyright Convention in 1992.

Colombia

Copyrights are governed by Decision 351 of 1993 issued by CAN and by Law 23 of 1982, Law 1403 of 2010, Decree 3942 of 2010, Law 565 of 2000 and Law 48 of 1975.

Moreover, Colombia is a party of the:

  • WIPO Copyright Treaty
  • Universal Copyright Convention and
  • the Inter-American Convention on Copyright in Literary, Scientific and Artistic Works

Czech Republic

Copyright, including both economic and moral rights related to it, is governed by the Copyright Act.

Denmark

Copyrights are governed by the Danish Act of Copyright (LBK 1144 23/10/2014).

Denmark is a party to several international conventions and treaties such as the Berne Convention, the Rome Convention, the TRIPS Agreement, the WIPO Copyright Treaty and the WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty.

Finland

The Copyrights Act governs copyrights in general, and the Finnish Penal Code governs copyright infringement crimes.

Finland has signed the Berne Copyright Convention.

As a member of the European Union, Finland has implemented the following copyright directives:

  • Directive 2017/1564/EU on the use of certain copyright protected work to the benefit of persons who are blind, visually impaired or otherwise print-disabled
  • Directive 2001/29/EC on the harmonization of certain aspects of copyright and related rights in the information society
  • Directive 96/9/EC on the legal protection of databases
  • Directive 91/250/EEC on the Legal Protection of Computer Programs

France

Part I of the French Intellectual Property Code (Articles L. 111-1 et seq. and R. 111-1 et seq.), which implements the 2001 European Copyright Directive, governs the protection of copyrights in France.

The revised Audiovisual Media Services Directive has entered into force on December 18, 2018 and awaits local transposition. Video-sharing platforms will now be submitted to this regulation.

Germany

Germany became signatory to the Berne Convention in 1887 as well as to the WIPO Copyright Treaty in 1996, amongst other international treaties relating to copyright matters.

Germany has implemented Directive 92/100/EEC on rental rights and lending rights and on certain rights related to copyright in the field of intellectual property and Directive 2001/29/EC on the harmonization of certain aspects of copyright and related rights in the information society.

Copyright issues are governed by the German Copyright Act (Urheberrechtsgesetz).

Hong Kong

Copyrights are mainly governed under the Copyright Ordinance (Cap.528). Hong Kong became signatory to the Berne Convention in 1997.

Hungary

Act 76 of 1999 on Copyright. Hungary became signatory to Berne Convention in 1922. Today the version of 1971 of the Convention is implemented. As a member of the EU, Hungary has implemented several directives into its Copyright Act.

India

Copyright in India is enforced under the Copyright Act 1957, as amended by the Copyright Act (Amendment) Act 2012 (Copyright Act). Like the Berne Convention, which has been adopted by India, Section 57 of the Copyright Act also expressly protects the moral rights of authors. It permits an author or their legal representative to:

  • Claim authorship of the work
  • Restrain or claim damages in respect of any distortion, mutilation, modification or other act in relation to the said work, if such distortion, mutilation, modification or other act would be prejudicial to his honor or reputation

Indonesia

Copyrights are governed by Law Number 28 of 2014 on Copyrights (Copyright Law), which revoked the previous Law Number 19 of 2002. Indonesia became the signatory to the Berne Convention in 1997, World Intellectual Property Organization Copyright Treaty in 1997, and World Intellectual Property Organization Performances and Phonograms Treaty in 2004.

Ireland

The Copyright and Related Rights Act 2000 (as amended) governs copyright in Ireland. This statutory framework will be amended by the EU Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market, once transposed into Irish law. Ireland is a party to the Berne Convention of 1927.

Israel

The Copyright Act 2007 is the governing statute for copyrights.

Italy

Law No. 633/1941 (the Italian Copyright Law) is the statute governing copyrights.

AGCOM (Autorità per le garanzie nelle comunicazioni, the Italian Communication Authority) Regulation on Copyright Protection on Electronic Communication Networks (Resolution No. 680/13/CONS dated December 12, 2013) as further amended also applies.

Italy is party to various international copyright treaties and conventions such as the Universal Copyright Convention, Convention for the Protection of Producers of Phonograms Against Unauthorized Duplication of their Phonograms, the Berne Convention, the TRIPS Agreement, WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty, and WIPO Copyright Treaty.

Japan

The Copyright Act (Act No. 48 of 1970) (the Copyright Act) governs copyrights.

Japan became signatory to Berne Convention in 1899, to Universal Copyright Convention in 1956, International Convention for the Protection of Performers, Producers of Phonograms and Broadcasting Organizations in 1989, Convention for the Protection of Producers of Phonograms Against Unauthorized Duplication of Their Phonograms in 1978, Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights in 1994, World Intellectual Property Organization Copyright Treaty in 2000 and World Intellectual Property Organization Performances and Phonograms Treaty in 2002.

Luxembourg

Copyrights are governed by the Law of April 18, 2001 on Copyright, Neighboring Rights and Databases, as amended by the Law of April 18, 2004 and lastly by the Law of February 10, 2015 implementing Directive (EU) 2011/77, as well as the Law of April 25, 2018 relating to the collective management of copyright and related rights (short title).

Mexico

Federal Copyright Law (Ley Federal del Derecho de Autor) governs copyrights.

Netherlands

Copyrights are governed by the Copyright Act of 1912.

New Zealand

Copyright is governed by the Copyright Act 1994 as well as court judgments that impact the interpretation of the Copyright Act.

The Copyright Act provides for moral rights for original works, as well as for performer's rights for performances.

New Zealand is a party to the Berne Convention, the Universal Copyright.

Norway

Copyrights are governed by the Norwegian Copyright Act (No: åndsverkloven).

The new Copyright Act came into force on July 1, 2018. The purpose with the new Copyright Act was to modernize and simplify the Act, and thus the new Act entailed mostly structural changes. Norway is a signatory to multiple international conventions, such as the Berne Convention, the Rome Convention, and the TRIPS agreement.

Poland

Poland became a signatory of the Berne Convention in 1920 and the WIPO Copyright Treaty in 2003.

It is also a signatory of other international treaties relating to copyright matters, eg, Poland has been bound by the TRIPS Agreement since July 1, 1995.

Additionally, Poland has implemented – or is in the process of implementing – certain EU Directives relating to copyright matters.

Portugal

Copyrights are governed by the Code of Copyright and Related Rights.

Portugal became signatory to the Berne Convention in 1911 and to the WIPO Copyright Treaty in 2010.

Romania

Law no. 8 of March 14, 1996 on copyright and neighboring rights governs copyright in Romania. Romania became signatory to the Berne Convention in 1926 and grants moral rights to authors, which may not be waived.

Russia

Part IV of Russian Civil Code governs copyrights.

Russia is also party of the main international copyright treaties and conventions such as Universal Copyright Convention, Convention for the Protection of Producers of Phonograms, Berne Convention, WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty and WIPO Copyright Treaty.

Saudi Arabia

The Copyright Law (promulgated by Royal Decree No. M/41 of 2 Rajab, 1424 (corresponding to 30 August 2003)), and its Implementing Regulations (Copyright Law).

The KSA acceded to the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works on 11 December 2003.

Singapore

The framework for the protection of copyright in Singapore is found in the Copyright Act (Cap 63). Singapore also acceded to the Berne Convention on September 21, 1998 which came into force in Singapore on December 21, 1998. The Copyright Act (Cap 63) is being reviewed by the Ministry of Law to take into account, among other things, whether Singapore should have a voluntary system of copyright registration. 

Any artistic work which is applied to a product and industrially produced does not fall under the protection of the Copyright Act and instead the Registered Designs Act (Cap. 266) will apply.

Slovak Republic

The copyright is governed by Slovak Act No. 185/2015 Coll., the Copyright Act, as amended (Copyright Act). In addition to the Copyright Act, the Slovak Act No. 40/1964 Coll., the Civil Code, as amended (Civil Code) is applicable as the general regulation. As regards the criminal sanctions resulting from the infringement of the copyright, the Slovak Act No. 300/2005 Coll., the Criminal Code, as amended (Criminal Code) shall apply. Slovak Republic is signatory of several international agreements as well:

  • Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works
  • WIPO Copyright Treaty, Rome Convention for the Protection of Performers
  • Producers of Phonograms and Broadcasting Organizations
  • Convention for the Protection of Producers of Phonograms Against
  • Unauthorized Duplication of their Phonograms

South Korea

Copyrights are governed by the CA. Korea has also acceded to the Universal Copyright Conventions, the Berne Convention, the Rome Convention, the Geneva Phonograms Convention, the GATT, the TRIPS Agreement, the WIPO Copyright Treaty, and the WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty.

Spain

In Spain, copyright is governed by Legislative Royal Decree 1/1996 on Intellectual Property. This law implements the EU Copyright Directives (Directive 2001/29/EC on the harmonization of certain aspects of copyright and related rights in the information society, Directive 2004/48/EC on the enforcement of intellectual property rights); Directive 96/9/EC on the legal protection of databases; and in particular, Council Directive of May 14, 1991 on the Legal Protection of Computer Programs (91/250/EEC).

In addition, Spain is party to the Berne Convention.

Sweden

The Copyrights Act (1960:729) (Lag om upphovsrätt till litterära och konstnärliga verk) governs copyrights.

Sweden is a signatory to the Berne Convention.

Switzerland

The Federal Act and Federal Ordinance on Copyright and Related Rights govern copyrights. Switzerland became a signatory to the Berne Convention in 1886.

The Swiss federal government recently initiated a revision of the Copyright Act. It is expected to be passed within a few years.

Taiwan

The Copyright Act was first introduced and came into force in Taiwan on May 14, 1928. Taiwan is a member of the WTO and follows the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS).

Ukraine

Main legislative acts regulating copyright protection in Ukraine are the Law of Ukraine "On Copyright and Related Rights" dated December 23, 1993 and Civil Code of Ukraine dated January 16, 2003. Further, Ukraine is a signatory to the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works.

United Arab Emirates

Copyrights are governed by the Federal Law No. 15 of 1980 (Printed Matter and Publishing Law) and Federal Law No. 7 of 2002 in respect of Author Copyrights and Parallel Rights (Copyright Law).

In addition to the Berne Convention, the UAE has acceded to the WIPO Copyright Treaty, the Rome Convention and the WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty.

United Kingdom

The UK became a signatory to the Berne Convention in 1887.

Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988, as (extensively) amended (Copyright Act) governs copyrights.

Copyright and Rights in Databases Regulations 1997 govern separate sui generis rights in relation to databases in which an investment has been made in obtaining/verifying/presenting their contents.

United States

Title 17 of the US Code governs copyrights. The United States became signatory to the Berne Convention in 1988. However, though the Berne Convention grants authors moral rights, moral rights are not recognized in the US Copyright Act. Under US law, moral rights can receive protection through judicial interpretation of several copyright, trademark, privacy, and defamation statutes, and for authors of a work of visual art, through 17 U.S.C. §106A, known as the Visual Artists Rights Act of 1990 (VARA).