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Copyright issues

All users of Legaltree are bound by the Terms of Use posted on the home page.
Section 13 of the Terms of Use states, in part:
The User shall not create Content … that infringes any copyright or trademark held by any third party (including, without limitation, their employer)…
Section 13(3) of the Copyright Act, R.S.C. 1985, c. C-42 states, in part, the following:
Where the author of a work was in the employment of some other person … and the work was made in the course of his employment …, the person by whom the author was employed shall, in the absence of any agreement to the contrary, be the first owner of the copyright…
Therefore, if a memo or other work is produced in the course of employment, it cannot be published without the employer’s permission.
Copyright protects only the expression of the ideas in a work, and not the ideas themselves. Therefore, if the ideas in the work are reframed in a way that creates an original literary work, there will be no copyright infringement.
However, how much a work needs to be modified to create an original literary work is a mixed question of law and fact that is hard to answer, and best avoided. Therefore, it is always preferable to have your employer screen your work and grant permission for publishing of any content that is at all related to work completed in the course of employment.
This page does not provide advice to contributors - under the Terms of Use, users are completely and solely responsible for the content they publish – it merely alerts contributors to one of the issues they should consider before contributing content.