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Library Research Guides

Obtaining Copyright Permissions

This guide explains how to obtain permission to use copyrighted works.

Copyright Questions?

The University of Michigan Library Copyright Office provides help with copyright questions for University of Michigan faculty, staff and students. Please email us with questions or visit our website for more information.

Legal Advice

The information presented here is intended for informational purposes and should not be construed as legal advice. If you have specific legal questions pertaining to the University of Michigan, please contact the Office of the General Counsel.

If you require legal advice in your personal capacity, the lawyer referral services operated by the Washtenaw County Bar Association and the State Bar of Michigan may be helpful to you.

Obtaining Copyright Permissions

Welcome to the Obtaining Copyright Permissions guide from the University of Michigan Library Copyright Office. If you want to use a copyrightable work that is not in the public domain in a way that would implicate one of the rights of copyright holders and is not permitted by a user’s right, you must get permission from the copyright holder. For more information on these topics, please consult Copyright Basics.

This guide covers the following topics:

Last revised on April 24, 2017. This guide was initially prepared by Robert Spence in 2011.

Services of the University of Michigan Library Copyright Office

The University of Michigan Library Copyright Office provides the university community information about copyright. In addition to this guide and our other web resources, we provide the following services:

  • We answer copyright questions via email.
  • We consult about copyright questions in person, over the phone, and via Google Hangouts. (Please email us to request an appointment.)
  • We hold online copyright office hours for the university community on Friday afternoons. (Please sign up via Google Calendar using a university email address.)
  • We offer public workshops on copyright.
  • We offer customized copyright education (presentations, workshops, etc.) for university groups, including faculty, staff, and students. (Please email us to request this.)

Although we provide information and education about copyright, we are not able to provide legal advice.

Note that some copyright-related issues are handled elsewhere at the university:

  • If you have specific legal questions pertaining to the University of Michigan, please contact the Office of the General Counsel.
  • If you believe your copyright has been infringed on a web site hosted by the university, please contact our DMCA agent.
  • If you have questions about using the university trademarks, including the Block M, please consult the Permissions Guide from University of Michigan Global Communications.

If you require legal advice in your personal capacity, the lawyer referral services operated by the Washtenaw County Bar Association and the State Bar of Michigan may be helpful to you.