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How to Apply for a Copyright in Kenya

Vincent Nyoike
Vincent Nyoike How to

If you have some artwork that you want to protect, then you need to apply for copyright in Kenya. The artwork can either be a book, music, sound records, audio-visual work, or any other invention. You can apply for copyright with Kenya Copyright Board (KECOBO). The cost of registering a copyright in Kenya is Ksh 1,000 per work.

When you apply for a copyright, you protect your work or idea from getting stolen. You can acquire intellectual property in Kenya through:

  • Copyright
  • Patent
  • Trademark
  • Industrial designs  

What is Copyright?

A copyright is a legal right granted to an inventor or a creator of original work allowing him to use and distribute it for a limited time. A copyright can be extended after expiry. The Kenya Copyright Board is in charge of the issuance of copyright in Kenya.

Read also: How to fuliza M-pesa, charges and repayment.

Duration of Copyright in Kenya

For literary, musical and artistic work apart from photography, the expiration of the copyright is 50 years after the end of the year the creator dies.

For audio-visual and photography work, the expiration of copyright is after 50 years since the work was first made available to the public.

Read also: How to apply for TSC TPAD online. 

How to Apply for Copyright in Kenya

To apply for copyrights in Kenya, follow these steps:

  1. Collect copyright registration forms from Kenya Copyrights Board offices
  2. Fill in the registration forms
  3. Get commissioning of the documents from a Commissioner of Oaths
  4. Attach two original copies of the work
  5. Pay the prescribed copyright registration fee at the bank
  6. Present duly filled registration forms and a bank slip at KECOBO reception upon which you will be issued a certificate of registration
  7. You will then be issued with an original “Certificate of Registration” within 5-7 working days.

Kenya Copyright Board Banking Details 

Bank: Kenya Commercial Bank
Account Name: Kenya Copyright Board
Account Number: 1104002450
Branch: Kipande House

You can also pay copyright registration fees to KECOBO through Mpesa. To do so:

  • Go to Mpesa Menu
  • Select Lipa na M-pesa
  • Select Paybill and Enter paybill number: 522052
  • In the Account number field, enter the title of your copyright work
  • Enter Mpesa PIN and then send

Benefits of Registering a Copyright

When you register a copyright, you will enjoy the following benefits:

  • You get right to claim authorship of the work
  • You can object to the distribution of the work
  • You get exclusive rights to distribute the work either by selling, renting, or leasing

Within the 5-7 days, Kenya Copyrights Board will be verifying if the copyright registration has been registered with someone else.

Read also: How to register a business in Kenya.

Final Word

If you have created some art or you have an invention, you need to get a copyright for it to prevent it from getting stolen or be distributed by other people. It gives you exclusive ownership rights and you can distribute it as you wish. It costs Ksh 1,000 to get copyright per work and it is valid for 50 years.