Software Copyright Registration in Ukraine


Computer programs (software) are one of the most problematic copyright objects. Ukrainian legislator defines software as a set of instructions in terms of words, codes, schemes, symbols or in any other terms, that are expressed by means, adapted for reading by computer and bring into action for the purpose or the result. Consequently, software is a result of intellectual activity of its' creators (authors), that due to legislation (Article 8 Ukrainian Law On Copyright and Related Rights) belongs to copyright.

Software copyright appears from the moment of creation, h.e. from the moment the idea of programmer author transformed to the system of symbols. Copyright is valid during authors' life and after his death — during 70 years. Copyright holder can use: a copyright protection sign, that is placed on each copy of a creation and looks like © (copyright symbol), name of copyright holder and year of first publication.

Copyright appears from the moment of its creation and registration is not required. However, the practice shows, that authorship is a topical issue today. Copyright registration gives many benefits, such as: simplifies copyright assignment; facilitates affiliation in a case of controversies and prunes legacy execution. Moreover, copyright registration is desired for entry software in the books.

In Ukraine copyright registration is made by the State Intellectual Property Service. For registration one should file:
- standard pattern application;
- source program or its' fragments to the extent necessary for its' identification;
- user guide.
Time frame of copyright registration is 2 months.

Many authors concern about necessity of refiling registration application in case of modification of previous software. If the program was modified with trifling alterations, refiling of documents is not required. Author needs to prove that modification is based on previously registered version.

In Russian Federation copyright registration is also possible and it is exercised by Federal Institute of Industrial Property (FIPS). Despite the provisions of Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works, that state equal copyright protection, many russian companies prefer paying royalty to authors on the basis of a document confirming copyright registration in the Russian Federation.

See also:
How to register a Copyright in Ukraine?
Copyright registration in Belarus
Copyright registration in Kazakhstan