New Copyright Law Enters into Force in Montenegro

Sep 28 2016 - 15:44

A new copyright law entered into force in Montenegro on August 19, 2016, bringing greater clarity to certain requirements and procedures and eliminating terminology shortcomings of the former law.

The law introduces provisions on orphan works and prescribes their use in line with the Directive 2012/28/EU of the European Parliament and the Council of October 25, 2012. Orphan works are works such as books, newspaper and magazine articles and films that are protected by copyright but whose authors or other rights holders are not known or cannot be located or contacted to obtain copyright permissions. These works may be used by publicly accessible libraries, educational institutions and museums, as well as by archives, film or audio heritage institutions and public service broadcasting organisations, under the conditions prescribed by the law.

Furthermore, the law amends provisions on collective management of copyright and related rights, defines the types of collective management and enables collective management to be authorized by tacit agreement, meaning that a collective organisation can act on behalf of rights holders without their explicit approval, if individual management is complex and impractical and, as such, usually managed collectively. However, rights owners may always opt for the individual management of rights, which must be explicitly communicated to the organisation. Under the amendments, a copyright collective represents not only rights holders from Montenegro, but also foreign rights holders by virtue of bilateral agreements with foreign organisations.

The law also includes a new chapter dedicated to multi-territorial licensing of rights in musical works for online use. This chapter clearly defines the responsibilities of a collective organisation that manages online rights, aiming to bring greater transparency in managing multi-territorial repertoires, sales reporting and invoicing, distribution of royalties, etc. These provisions will be applied as of January 1, 2019.

Finally, the new law regulates in depth the legal protection of databases as a sui generis right, which brings these provisions fully in line with the directives of the European Parliament and of the Council.

By: Jasna Jusic

For more information, please contact Jasna Jusic at our Montenegro office.

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