The Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 (CDPA) sets the term of protection for works protected copyright. For artistic works, the term of protection is life of the author plus 70 years. For more information on the term of copyright, see our Copyright Notice: Duration of copyright (term) on this subject. Section 52 CDPA previously reduced the term of copyright for industrially manufactured artistic works to 25 years.
In 2011, a judgment was made by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) in relation to copyright for design works. The government concluded that section 52 CDPA should be repealed to provide equal protection for all types of artistic work. This repeal was included in the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013. The main copyright works affected were works of artistic craftsmanship. The primary types of work believed to be in scope were furniture, jewellery, ceramics, lighting and other homewares. This would be both the 3D manufacture and retail and the 2D representation in publishing.
The Copyright (Amendment) Regulations 2016 came into force on 6 April 2017. They amended Schedule 1 CDPA to allow works made before 1957 to attract copyright protection, whatever their separate design status. They also removed a compulsory licensing provision for works with revived copyright from the Duration of Copyright and Rights in Performances Regulations 1995 (1995 Regulations). Existing compulsory licences which had agreed a royalty or remuneration with the rights holder could continue. The relevant documents can be found in the Changes to Schedule 1 CDPA and duration of Copyright Regulations consultation.
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