Laws and Intellectual Property
December 14th 1994 Lithuania joined the Bern Convention, and on May
28th 1996 ratified it.
In Lithuania authors’ rights are protected according to the “Law of
the Authors’ Rights and Adjacent Rights” that is in force since June
10th 1999. The law states that the objects of authors’ rights are original
works of literature, science and art resulting from creative activity
expressed in a certain form. Their authors can enjoy all rights indicated
in the law.
A work as a material value can be sold, and its owner consequently acquires
the property right to the work. The owner can donate, sell or even destroy
the work, but the intellectual property of the work – the author’s right
– belongs to its author. The author also has personal – non-property
– rights: 1) the right to authorship, i.e. the right to be called the
author of the work; 2) the right to the author’s name, i.e. the right
to require that the author’s name be indicated when the work is used
(irrespective of the form of using the work); 3) the right to the inviolability
of the work, i.e. the author’s right to object to any distortion of
his work, which can result in violation of the author’s honour or reputation.
The Lithuanian Agency of Protecting Authors’ Rights (LATGA-A) was established
10 years ago. It represents Lithuanian authors on the basis of agreements
signed with them and foreign authors on the basis of agreements signed
with equivalent organizations of authors’ rights abroad.
However, violations of authors’ rights are rather common in Lithuania.
Active educational work and strict responsibility for violations are
the main instruments in the fight against the neglect of authors’ rights
spread in our society.