Copyright Transfer Example?

Could you give an example of when a copyright transfer would occur?

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Thanks for the question, annika!

@heatherrivera any examples you can think of regarding copyright transfer?

Hey @annika.schneider18!

Without seeing what prompted your question, I’m letting my mind wander freely and initially thought of this:

You are actively working on a project and have pretty substantial design and construction documents. Unless specifically discussed elsewhere, you are the title owner of these copyright documents. Once all material is handed over to the client at the close of the project, you are transferring your ownership of these documents to them. You may also be interested in reading up a bit on “work made for hire.”

I hope this helps! Good luck with your continued studies!


the ownership of the instruments of service get transferred to the owner exclusively only when in the contract, yes? assuming not the B101 or other AIA contracts. Does not the unadulterated B101 say that the owner gets non-exclusive rights to the instruments of service?
the answer that the architect is transferring ownership of the documents sounds ok, but the copyright is not transferred unless stated. What am I missing?

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Hi @jestes lets see if one of our expert architects can clarify.

@coachjasongolub do you mind jumping in?

I believe you have answered this correctly. The instruments of service (drawings, PDFs, CAD dwgs) can get sent to the client for their use. Copyright would be if they wanted to recreate the same building on a different site. Two separate issues that would require specific custom language in an AIA agreement.

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