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What You Don’t Know About Copyright Law Can Hurt You

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Did you know that when you purchase a house plan from a home designer, a house plan service, or a website you are not buying the right to use the plan design as you wish? It may come as a surprise to learn that you are actually only purchasing the paper sets of blackline prints along with a single-use license or authorization to build one dwelling using those sets of prints. To reuse or resell the plan design or the paper sets of blackline prints in total, in part, or with any degree of modification is illegal without the prior consent of the designer. Generally, a reasonably priced reuse fee can be paid to obtain the authorization to build a second dwelling with the sets of blackline prints. WOWhouseplans.com will reprint the sets of blackline prints in return for payment of a reuse fee, and customization of the plan design is always an option for an additional charge.

Did you know that if the individual or company you hire to build your home is illegally reusing the sets of blackline prints used to construct that home, whether modified in any way or not, an injunction to stop all work on your home can be placed at any time during its construction while legal claims of copyright violation are investigated? House plans and their designs are indeed protected in this and many other ways under federal copyright laws in Title 17 of the U.S. Code and in Title 37 of the Code of Federal Regulations. Copyright infringement is a serious offense, and not knowing the copyright laws relating to house plans, or "architectural works", can be a costly mistake. (Go to http://www.copyright.gov for more on the above mentioned copyright laws and regulations and go to http://www.wowhouseplans.com/policies for more on the copyright policy of WOWhouseplans.com)