If a person or company is copying, stealing, or imitating your original work or website, use a cease and desist copyright infringement letter to demand that they provide proper credit or stop immediately.
Below, we provide a strongly worded template to help you make a powerful demand. The letter threatens legal action unless the violator stops profiting from, claiming credit for, or using your original work without permission.
Cease and Desist Copyright Infringement Letter Template
We provide blanks for you to easily fill in the critical information to make your letter effective, including:
- Infringement Method: How the offending party infringed on your copyrighted material
- Original Work: The material you own that the offending party infringed on, and how their work is the same as or similar to your own
- Copyright Registration Number: The number provided to you by the US Copyright Office, if you’ve registered the work
Is a Cease and Desist Copyright Infringement Letter Legally Enforceable?
No, a cease and desist copyright infringement letter is not legally enforceable. The letter’s only purpose is to serve as a warning that you may take legal action unless the infringement stops. Ideally, the violator will stop before you need to take legal action, saving you time, money, and stress.
What if My Letter Is Ignored?
If your cease and desist letter is ignored, you have the option to file an infringement lawsuit against the offending party. However, you must first formally register your original work with the US Copyright Office in order to file the lawsuit.
Your original works are protected by US copyright laws. As soon as the expression of an idea is written, the work is copyrighted and the owner has the exclusive right to use and display this original copyrighted work.
Those exclusive rights include:
- Monetizing the work
- Creating derivative works
- Displaying the work publicly
Registering your work creates a public record of the copyright, and anyone wishing to use all (or a portion) of this copyrighted work must then first get permission from you, the owner.
If your website is covered by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), and a third party is posting your copyrighted material, you may have to send a takedown notice to your registered DMCA agent.