Overview

Overview of the Tool

This tool is designed to gather some initial information from you and to determine, based on that information, whether you may be eligible to terminate an agreement or transfer and if so, whether your "notice window" is currently open.

Below is an overview of the questions that are asked as you complete the tool and an outline of the kinds of information you will need to have to hand in order to complete the tool. While the tool does not record your responses from one session to the next, don't be afraid to run through it multiple times with different inputs. The tool is designed to provide helpful information even to users who do not have a full set of details, and it should take less than ten minutes to complete any one approach.

If you are unsure about something the tool requires, try to answer it as well and as accurately you can, giving as much information as you can so that this information can be assessed by a lawyer who you consult with this information or by a participating law clinic. We have tried to phrase the questions as straightforwardly as possible. We have also provided links connected to some of the more complex terms or terms with legal meanings, in an effort to help you better understand the nature of the information the question is seeking and, thus, to enable you to hopefully better answer the questions.

If you work through the tool and, based on the information you provide, it seems that you are not currently eligible to terminate an agreement in relation to a copyrighted work, do not be disheartened. It may be that you entered some of the information in incorrectly and/or that you need some advice and assistance to correctly interpret and/or respond to the questions.

Of course, some authors simply won't have termination windows available. The window may have passed, or it might be too far in the future, or the cirucmstances of the work's creation might put it beyond the law's scope. In these instances, it is important to remember that there are other options for reclaiming (or obtaining) rights. A good starting place is the Authors Alliance guide Understanding Rights Reversion, which walks through the process of using contractual terms and non-contractual negotiating tactics to get rights back without a termination right.

If you work through the tool and it says that you cannot currently activate your termination right but that you may be able to do so in future, feel free to try the tool again at that future date or to otherwise investigate your termination options now or later. Changes in your circumstances over time can change what your termination options are so the results of this tool will not hold true over time. At any future date, you should complete the tool again entering in the new and then current information and/or seek new advice and assistance based on the then current information.

The tool is divided into the following sections & these require the following pieces of information:

Section 1 - First, tell us a few things about the work.

Information required to complete this section:
  • When the work was created.
  • Whether the work's copyright was registered with the US Copyright Office.
  • When the work was published.
  • When the agreement was entered in to.
  • Whether the agreement included the right of publication.

Section 2 - Now, let’s find out whether the work is eligible for termination.

Information required to complete this section:

Section 3 - Information about the work.

Information that can be input into this section:

To assist you in understanding some of the more complex terms used in this tool, we have also prepared a glossary.

We have also compiled some hints and tips about where you may be able to find this information here.

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