top of page

How To Copyright A Song In Nigeria


What is copyright?

Copyright is a legal right created by the law of a country, that grants the creator of an original work exclusive rights to its use and distribution, usually for a limited time, with the intention of enabling the creator (e.g. a musician) to receive compensation for their intellectual effort.

When are copyrights created?

Musical and Artistic works cannot be copyrighted unless the work has been written down, recorded or otherwise reduced to material form.

For compositions, the copyright is automatically created when music or lyrics are recorded, put on paper, or otherwise written down in a document

For master recordings, the copyright is created as soon as “a sound recording is fixed, meaning that the sounds must be captured in a medium. This may be “in a digital track, disk, tape, or other formats”.

Which law governs copyrights in Nigeria?

The primary law that protects copyright in Nigeria is the Copyright Act, Cap C28, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004.

Which institution is tasked with registration of copyright in Nigeria

The body charged with enforcement and protection of copyright is Nigeria Copyright Commission (NCC)

How does one register a copyright?

Visit and create an account on the portal. Note it may require physical presence at the Nigerian Copyright Commission for activation through a NCC agent of any branch.

Documents to be submitted include:

  • Completed registration form

  • Copies of your original work

  • Evidence of payment of the prescribed fee

What is the duration of Copyright?

  • The author of a literary, artistic or musical work enjoys copyright throughout his lifetime and for 70 years after his death.

  • In the case of films, sound recordings, performances etc., the owner enjoys Copyright for 50 years from the time the work was first published. The work goes to the public domain when the term of protection expires and third parties are allowed free use.

How much does copyrighting a song cost?

The fee for registration is ₦10, 000 (ten thousand naira) for those paying in naira, and $60 USD for those who are registering from outside Nigeria.

Fees for other transactions under the registration scheme are as follows:


Issuance of Certified true copy of Certificate



Issuance of Certified true copy of form



Corrections & Changes in submitted data



Issuance of certified true copy of a Work (Paper-based only)


Works below 50 pages



51 - 100 pages



101 - 200 pages



Above 201 pages




Find out More


bottom of page