Copyright Protection Reaches New Heights In The Dominican Republic

Author:Mr Luis Pellerano
Profession:Pellerano & Herrera

Luis R. Pellerano is a Partner with the Dominican Republic law firm of Pellerano & Herrera. He regularly represents foreign investors in transactions in the Dominican Republic and throughout the Caribbean and Latin America.

Article 8 of the Dominican Republic's Constitution establishes as a basic human right the recognition and protection of ownership rights over scientific, artistic, and literary works. Toward that end, a Dominican statute has ensured copyright protection in the country for quite some time. Recently, however, in an effort to adopt appropriate tools to fight piracy and to conform to the Agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights, the Dominican Republic passed a new Copyright Law.

Protected Works

The Dominican Republic's new copyright statute grants copyright protection to any original intellectual creation, whether literary, artistic, or scientific in its literary or artistic form, whatever its mode or form of expression may be, and regardless of the merit or value of the work or of its purpose or destination. Protected works include:

written works such as books and magazines;

oral works such as conferences, speeches, and sermons;

choreographic and pantomime works;

musical works with or without lyrics;

audiovisual works, whatever their mode of fixation may be;

artistic works such as drawings, paintings, architecture, sculpture, carvings, and lithographs;

photographic works;

works of applied art, which are those that may be of industrial use, such as furniture or jewelry;

technical works such as illustrations, maps, plans, and plastic works related to geography, topography, architecture, or the sciences;

computer programs and electronic databases, including technical documentation and users manuals; and

compilations of information or materials.

The copyright law also protects independent creations deriving from original works. Thus, translations, adaptations, musical arrangements, and any other transformations of an original work are protected as independent works, provided they have been made with the authorization of the copyright owner of the respective original work. Collections of literary or artistic works such as encyclopedias and anthologies, as well as collective works such as periodicals and dictionaries, are protected as long as the selection or organization methods employed constitute an original creation.

Origin Of Protected Works

Copyright protection is afforded to works of Dominican or foreign origin. Any works created by authors having Dominican nationality or residence in the country...

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