Archive for September, 2008

Can a copyright be an inherited item?

As my blog reflects both probate and estate planning issues, as well as copyright issues,  I thought I would tackle a question that that has recently been on a list serve.

Copyrights  give the author (assuming tha tthe author did not create a work for hire) protection for their work for the life in being + 70 years. Clearly, this is a significant amount of time. This is inheritable property.  An estate may well be receiving royalties for the use of the copyright long after the decedent has passed on. The most recent example of this is the Disturbia movie  lawsuit that was recently filed, where the estate of the author of the Alfred Hitchcock movie treatment sued for infringement on the copyright.

A trademark, by contrast, is a mark that is an identifier that indicates a particular good or product to a consumer. As such, the trademark passes with the business.

written by PermalinkComments (0)Leave a Comment »