Release Documents for Your Protection

A great use for Color Copies

Release documents are very important to your business

There are businesses which require release forms be signed by their customers in order to avoid any potential future legal action against them. These documents are in practice, contracts that present facts (usually related to liability and responsibility) that different consumers will interpret in different ways.

Some of the businesses who's customers must know what is the extent of their customer's right to use a certain material include photographers, graphics artists, cover artists, producers, advertising and marketing professionals, data collectors, research institutions, self-storage facilities and many more.

Lets say that you are writing a training manual of which you expect to make color copies for your outside sales team. You designed your document with confidential information, useful for the sales team. You used a professional company to print your training manual, they made the color copies on the right stock and got them bound as needed. Now the team has color copies of sensitive information that needs to be protected. A release form is ideal in that occasion. So along with a copy of the manual, have your team sign a copy of the release form.

As part of your business documents, you should have color-copied forms. Those forms need to look professional, neatly digitally printed and must match the format of your other corporate documents. Have those copies available every time you meet prospective customers. At the moment of the negotiation, it is the moment when you should extend two copies of the release document to frame the scope of the agreement being made. Sharing those printed copies at a latter moment might bee seen as innapropriate by one of the parties.

In the US, as soon as an original piece of work is created, such as a picture, a book, a piece of art, a photograph, or even the programmer's coding, that creator immediately gets copyrights.

In US, the office that handles copyrights is the United States Copyright Office (click to go to the page) Copyrights, as defined by that office:

"Copyright is a form of protection provided by the laws of the United States (title 17, U. S. Code) to the authors of "original works of authorship,""

Reproducing, copying or utilizing that creation without authorization could mean that someone is taking advantage of someone else's property. Even color copying one of those pieces might be questionable.

Showing something publicly could also be an infringement of copyrights.

In the case of works made for hire, the employer and not the employee is considered to be the author.

What Is Not Protected by Copyright? (from US copyright office)
Several categories of material are generally not eligible for federal copyright protection.

These include among others:
• Works that have not been fixed in a tangible form of expression (for example, choreographic works that have not been notated or recorded, or improvisational speeches or performances that have not been written or recorded)
• Titles, names, short phrases, and slogans; familiar symbols or designs; mere variations of typographic ornamentation, lettering, or coloring; mere listings of ingredients or contents
• Ideas, procedures, methods, systems, processes, concepts, principles, discoveries, or devices, as distinguished from a description, explanation, or illustration.

Release documents help protect rights. A release document, whether printed out of your home printer or through color copies printed at a professional printing company clearly states the rights and limitations to the use to a certain type of property. It is very useful document: A release document is a perfect way to make rights clear.

There are specialized attorneys that will help you protect your intellectual property. Using release forms in your business is a simple way to self protect against unauthorized use of copyright materials.

It is handy for a professional who runs into this instance frequently to keep a number of color copied forms in a file folder or in the corporate folder shown to prospective customers. The forms can be single sided with no chemical carbon copy, or you could have your forms color copied with


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