How to Register a Copyright for Leather Goods


Registering a copyright is a great way to protect your work and ensure that you are protected. If you make leather goods, whether they’re purses or wallets, you may want to register your products with the U.S. Copyright Office so that no one steals them.

Determine If Your Product Qualifies for Copyright Protection

Before you register a copyright for your leather goods, you must first make sure that it qualifies as an original work. Only original works of authorship can receive protection under U.S. copyright law. Works of authorship include literary works such as novels and nonfiction books, musical works such as songs, lyrics and sheet music, dramatic works like plays and screenplays, pantomimes and choreographic works, pictorial, graphic and sculptural works such as paintings, photographs and sculptures, motion pictures (including video recordings), sound recordings (e.g., CDs), architectural designs, computer programs or databases–regardless of whether they’re fixed in any tangible medium of expression.

Apply Online

The Copyright Office’s online application is the quickest and easiest way to register a copyright for leather goods. It’s also free, available 24 hours a day, and requires minimal information about the work.

You can apply online with any digital image of your work, but please be sure to include all of these details:

  • Title of the work (if applicable).
  • Author name(s) or pseudonym (if applicable).
  • Date of publication or release date (if applicable).
  • ISBN number (if applicable).

Process of Applying Online

The process of applying online is simple and straightforward. First, you must go to the US Copyright Office website.

Next, click on the link for copyright registration. If you would like to file online, click on “eCO Online Filing” under “Register a Copyright.” If you prefer to mail in a paper application, choose that option instead.

Once there is an account set up for you and your profile has been created, fill out all information requested on the form as it relates specifically to your work (the title of your piece). Remember: You will not be able raise any red flags by providing inaccurate information here, however, if any discrepancies do arise later down the line due to incorrect information being submitted when initially registering material, then it could result in having your rights suspended.

Apply by Mail or Fax

You can apply by mail, if you’re mailing a copy of the work and paying the fee. You can also apply in person at a copyright office if you’re submitting your work in person.

To register by mail or fax, follow these steps:

  • Provide two copies of your work (or scan it and send it digitally). You’ll need to provide one copy with each application. These may be submitted as hardcopies or electronically via email or other digital means, however, please note that any such submissions should be clearly labeled as “original works.”
  • Include your name, address and daytime telephone number on one copy (the “application copy”). The second copy will remain with us until we receive confirmation that the first has been received at our office. Applicants are strongly encouraged to include their names on both copies because our computer systems cannot match applications without this information.
  • If there are two authors listed on a single submission they should both provide their addresses and phone numbers.

Right to Copyright

In order to have the right to register a copyright for leather goods, you must be the owner of the work. The law does not give away this right simply because someone creates something, rather, it is given only when someone pays for that creation and takes ownership of it through some type of transaction or agreement.

You also need to have a valid copyrightable work. The Copyright Act defines “works of authorship” as literary works and artistic works (including sculptures). It excludes many things from being registered under copyright law, however, these exclusions do not apply if you want to register your leather goods as an original work of art rather than an industrial design under U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) rules.


Once you’ve determined that your design is eligible for copyright protection, it’s time to start planning the application process. You can apply online or by mail or fax, whichever method you choose, there are a few steps to follow. If you plan on registering with the U.S. Copyright Office, be sure to familiarize yourself with the proper procedure and requirements of it.

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