Copyright


Learn About Damages and Profits Fast and Easy

Learn About Damages and Profits Fast and Easy

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Learn About Damages and Profits Fast and Easy

If a holder of a copyright discovers that another party has used his or her material for their own benefit, it is a legal right of the copyright owner to file a civil lawsuit. Once a court has decided that copyright infringement has indeed taken place, it may decided upon remedies to make up for any damages suffered by the copyright owner because of the illegal activity. In most cases, courts may find that the infringer of the copyright is liable for the owner's actual damages sustained from improper use of his or her product or statutory damages.

Actual Damages and Profits

Judging by the nature of the copyright infringement that took place on the copyright owner, the owner may be entitled to the actual damages suffered by him or her as a result of the infringement. This also includes any profits obtained by the infringer which are directly linked to the copyright violation.

When establishing a proper amount of actual damages to compensate for the infringer's profits, the copyright owner is permitted to present evidence based on the infringer's gross revenue. At the same time, the infringer must prove that the profits he or she has incurred are not directly related to the copyright infringement through deductible expenses.

Statutory Damages

Before a judgment is decided upon by a court of civil law, the copyright owner has the right to request the recovery of statutory damages caused by the infringement, rather than actual damages. This is based on any single work of authorship for which the infringer is liable either individually or through joint involvement.

The sum of statutory damages is never less than $750 and never more than $30,000. If the copyright owner is able to prove that the infringer committed the violation willfully, the statutory damages sum may increase to no more than $150,000. If the court finds that the infringer unknowingly committed the violation, the statutory damages sum is lowered to no less than $200.

Additional Damages

Some cases may also provide further damages to the aggrieved copyright owner under a certain condition. If the court finds that the copyright infringer claimed to be exempt under certain conditions of a violation, but actually was knowingly breaking the law, the copyright owner may be entitled to twice the amount of the license fee for a period of up to three years. This is in addition to any award of damages given to the copyright owner.

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