The Libyan Copyright Law No. 7 of 1984 which is based on the Libyan Copyright Law No. 9 of 1968 governs the protection of Copyright. Libya is also a member to the Berne Convention.

In order to gain protection, the material to be copyrighted must be deposited with the Copyright Protection Office at the Ministry of Culture & Information within one month of its publication in Libya or of the entry of the material provided the filing is prior to distribution (with a minimum number of 20 editions for distribution). Protection is granted to original works of literature, art and science regardless of type, importance or purpose. This includes works of art expressed in writing, sounds, drawings, photography and motion pictures; such as, books, writings, speeches, oral works, plays, dramatic works, musical compositions, films and phonographic works. Protection is granted for the lifetime of the author plus 50 years following his/her death.

In order for protection to be effective, the work of art is to be original and include personal efforts, invention and new arrangement.

The Ministry of Culture & Information reserves the right to allow publication of the work of art if the copyright holder has not done so or if his/her heirs do not publish it by obtaining an order from the Civil Court to transfer the right of publication to the Ministry of Culture and Information, while providing the copyright holder or the heirs with fair compensation.

Infringements are prosecuted before the Civil Court in Libya.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

Abu-Ghazaleh Intellectual Property Bulletins

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