Penalties for Copyright Infringement

      The penalties for copyright infringement can be severe. The law provides the copyright owner with the right to obtain actual damages or "statutory damages." Statutory damages are those set by law and can range from $200 to $150,000 per infringement, plus attorney fees. As a result, damage awards can be much higher than the actual loss to the copyright owner. Also, in some circumstances copyright infringement may be a criminal offense punishable by fine or imprisonment. For those reasons, it is important to work with experienced legal counsel when dealing with copyright issues.