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Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988

The Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 came into force on 1 August 1989.

The 1988 Act provided another major overhaul and updating of copyright law but the process has continued since then with a number of amendments, many implementing various European Directives. To differentiate it from the original, the act is now referred to as the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 (as amended).

One of the important changes was effected by the Duration of Copyright and Rights in Performances Regulations 1995 which implemented Directive 93/98/EEC (with the exception of Article 4) on the duration of copyright and related rights in the UK. This harmonised the term of protection for copyright throughout the EU.

The latest copyright sections of the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 (as amended) PDF document(1.53Mb) are available.

Discussion of sections 274 to 281 and 285 to 295 of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 (in relation to Patent Agents, Patents County Courts etc) can be found in the Manual of Patent Practice. In relation to Design Right and Registered Designs, sections 213-273 of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 as enacted are available via the OPSI website External Link. The Registered Designs Act as amended is available on our website. Sections 282-284 in relation to trade mark agents are also available on the OPSI website External Link whilst a consolidated version of the Trade Marks Act 1994 PDF document(358Kb) is available on our website. Please note that some of these links will take you to the IP Professional Section of our website whilst others will take you to the OPSI website. To get back, just use the back button on your web browser.