The protection of copyright and related rights is regulated by the Law on Copyright and Related Rights (1999) (last edition 2021). The Law is harmonised with International and European Union legal acts. The Law defines authors’ economic and moral rights, establishes the objects and subjects of copyright and related rights, terms of protection of copyright and related rights, and functions of collective administration association supervision by the Ministry of Culture. The liability for breach of copyright and related rights is established by the Criminal Code of the Republic of Lithuania, Article XXIX “Crimes against Intellectual and Industrial Property and the Administrative Code of the Republic of Lithuania”, Article 214¹º.
In 2006, the Lithuanian Parliament adopted amendments to the Law on Copyright and Related Rights. These amendments were required for the regulation of copyright and related rights in the presentation of audiovisual works via new media services, e. g. mobile phones, internet, etc. The amendments were made with the aim of harmonising its provisions with EU requirements, namely Directive 2001/84/EC on resale rights and Directive 2004/48/EC on enforcement of intellectual property rights. The new amendments lay down the rules for the distribution of recordings of broadcasts after the first sale or other kinds of transfer of the ownership rights of broadcast recordings. The new provision of the Law foresees that the exclusive right to distribute recordings of broadcasts or their copies is exhausted in the territory of the European Economic Area in respect of those recordings or copies, which are sold by the broadcaster or its successor in title, or under the authorisation of any of these, and which are lawfully released into circulation in the territory of the European Economic Area. The Law was also supplemented with a new provision regarding an author’s non-property rights to computer programmes and electronic data. The provision provides that the above-mentioned rights may not be used in such a way as to unreasonably constrain a holder’s property rights to computer programmes and data, including the right to adapt, change and distribute these works.
A major role in copyright and related rights’ protection is played by the collective administration of these rights, performed by the subjects of the copyright and related rights on the basis of voluntary membership in non-profit organisations. The Lithuanian and foreign copyright in Lithuania is collectively administered by the Association LATGA established in 1991 and the music copyright association NATA established in 2012. The collective administration of the performers and phonogram producers’ rights is performed by the Lithuanian Related Rights Association AGATA that was established in 1999. At the initiative of the performers and phonogram producers, the related rights association GRETA was established in 2013. The rights of the owners of audiovisual works are administered by the Association of Audiovisual Works Copyright AVAKA established in 2008.