Transfer, assignment and licensing

Transfer and assignment

What rules, restrictions and procedures govern the transfer and assignment of copyright? Are any formalities required to secure the legal effect of the transfer or assignment?

The transfer of copyright is governed by the general rules of freedom of contract.  

All rights to economic exploitation can be transferred, except for moral rights, which are inalienable and non-transferable.


What rules, restrictions and procedures govern copyright licensing?

See “Transfer and assignment”.

Are there any special provisions governing sub-licensing?


What collective licensing bodies operate in your jurisdiction and how are their activities regulated?

Italian Legislative Decree 2017/35 implementing Directive 2014/26 establishes the collective and independent bodies and entities that manage copyright and related rights. The Italian Society of Authors and Publishers (SIAE) is the competent authority for copyright. It handles the intermediation of exclusive rights for economic exploitation (music, theatre, television), as well as the collection and allocation of remuneration rights, such as:

  • private copying pursuant to Articles 71sexies and following of the Copyright Act;
  • resale right pursuant to Articles 144 and following of the Copyright Act;
  • right to rent pursuant to Article 18bis and remuneration pursuant to Article 46bis;
  • remuneration for reprography pursuant to Article 68; and
  • remuneration for loan pursuant to Article 69.

The collective management of related rights is entrusted to several entities operating in the field of music and audiovisual works, collecting and allocating remunerations pursuant to Articles 73 and 73bis of the Copyright Act, and remuneration for private copying pursuant to Article 71sexies. The list of companies managing the rights related to copyright is available on the website of the Presidency of the Italian Council of Ministers at