Legal notes to copyright registration in Iran

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Copyright registration in Iran. Iran also called Persia, and officially the Islamic Republic of Iran is the easternmost country in the Middle East, and in Western Asia. Iran’s economy is a mixture of central planning, state ownership of oil and other large enterprises, village agriculture, and small-scale private trading and service venture. Furthermore, Iran is ranked as an upper-middle-income economy by the World Bank. Accordingly, many businesses want to enter this market and one of the most important preparations a business needs to take before expanding to this country is to learn the procedure of copyright registration in Iran.

Copyright in Iran

Unlike other intellectual property rights such as trademarks, patents, industrial designs, plant varieties, etc., copyright does not need to be registered for protection but will be automatically protected from the time the works are created.

The creation must be visible in a certain material form, like content, quality, form, medium, language, published or unpublished, registered or unregistered.

Accordingly, whether registered or not, the copyright to the work will still be protected. However, the creator should still apply for copyright registration early because early registration will give the author/owner of the work many advantages in the event of a dispute.

When unauthorized use of work occurs around the world, the owner of a work who has registered copyright in advance will not have to waste time and complicate matters with proving himself/herself to be the legitimate owner of the work.

Thereby, in order to avoid passivity, the owner of the work should make a copyright registration to protect their rights and interests when there is an infringement.

Copyright registration in Iran

Iran is currently not a member country of The Berne Convention for Copyright. This country is somewhat in the state of an observer at the moment, waiting to see the effects and benefits of joining the Berne Convention, as well as the downside of participation.

The Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works (the Berne Convention) is an international agreement governing copyright. The agreement was first accepted in Berne, Switzerland, in 1886.

Documents for copyright registration in Iran

To obtain copyright registration in Iran, the author of the work needs to prepare the following documents:

  • Declaration of copyright registration in Iran;
  • Two copies of copyrighted work;
  • Documents proving the right to apply;
  • Written consent of co-authors, if the work has co-authors;
  • Written consent of the co-owners, if the copyright is jointly owned;
  • Notarized identity card of the author or owner of the work;
  • Power of Attorney, if the applicant is an authorized person;
  • Notarized copy of the company’s business registration certificate (if the owner is a company).

The copyright law of Iran

The first and primary legislation regulating copyright in Iran dates back nearly 47 years. It is titled the Act for Protection of Authors, Composers and Artists Rights 1970 (Copyright Act 1970).

The law was passed by Iran’s National Consultative Assembly, supplemented with the “Law for the protection of Rights of the Authors of Computer Programs” passed on 2000 (the Iranian year 1379).

On 22 August 2010, Iran’s Islamic Consultative Assembly passed a reformation of article 12 of Law for the Protection of Authors, Composers and Artists Rights and increased the copyright length based on author’s death to 50 years after the death of author; this law only applies to works that were still in protection when the law passed on 22 August 2010.

The copyright law in Iran is not regulated or influenced by international treaties at the moment as Iran has not joined the Berne Convention or WIPO Copyright Treaty. In 2012, Iran has announced plan to join the Berne Convention. However, 10 years in the future, the country still doesn’t have a clear plan or road map.

According to the world’s point of view, in the following years, the joining of Iran in International Treaties are also unlikely as this country is currently going through a stage of protest, revolution, rebellion, etc.

Besides copyright, Iran has joined many other international IP treaties since the beginning of the 21 century.

Iran is a member of the WIPO since 2001, joined the Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property (Paris Convention) in 1959. In 2003, Iran became a party to the Madrid Agreement and the Madrid Protocol for the International Registration of Marks (trademark registration). In 2005, Iran joined the Lisbon Agreement for the Protection of Appellations of Origin and their International Registration, which ensures the protection of geographical names associated with products.

You can see a list of Iran IP firms here.

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