Mag. Balazs Esztegar LL.M.
Attorney-at-law Vienna

Piaristengasse 41/10
1080 Vienna, Austria
Tel. +43 1 997 4102
Fax +43 1 997 4102-99

Copyright Law

Copyright is protecting works

The copyright law provides for the protection of intellectual property. Subject of copyright protection is always a “work” as a specifically intellectual creation. Ideas as such cannot be protected, they must be manifested in a concrete work. In that case, however, protection is generated, according to the Copyright Law Act, already by the real act of creation. Registration like in trademark law is not required.


Claims under Copyright Law

The copyright law provides for the author or for the licensee authorised to use the work a number of claims and titles which can be enforced against everybody. Copyright infringements are made easily on the internet and they are perpetrated everyday in a high number. The claims of the author are adjusted to the Copyright Law Act and they target the discontinuance of infringing actsremoval, as well as the payment of a fair amount of licence fee or indemnity. In addition, the party having been injured in his or her rights shall also be authorised to claim the publication of the court judgment. Should the amount of the damage fail to be fixed, it shall be calculated and enforced via a claim for the settlement of accounts.

In such a case it is recommended to authorise an attorney at law specialised in copyright law. In case the copyright infringement has been perpetrated on the internet, the necessity for in-depth knowledge of the internet media and social networks may also emerge, in addition to the mastery of copyright law.

Observe the Correct Sequence

In order to place each claim on a strong fundament a structured proceeding shall be desirable. With the help of search programmes it is relatively simple to detect copyright infringements on the internet. It is important to secure proofs in advance, for example via printings or screenshots. Thereby the copyright infringement will be documented. For the documentation the date of creation is important, and the URL, under which the text or image has been found, is also relevant.


Copyright Demand Letter

After the composition of a complete documentation it will be possible to enforce the claims derived from the copyright. Here, the first step is frequently a letter of notice, a copyright demand letter, which might allow to avoid a costly judicial proceeding. If however the demand letter will not lead to the desired success, the person injured in the copyright may enforce his or her claims before the court for discontinuance, removal, fair licence fee and/or indemnity and publication of the judgment via a claim for injunction.