Copyright Laws

ResponsibilityDelivery of Material

Each individual in the University is responsible for understanding and complying with national and international copyright laws. In accordance with national copyright law, the University reserves the right to terminate system access of users who seriously or repeatedly infringe on the rights of copyright owners. The University faculty, staff, and students also must consider the University policies on intellectual property, patents, and copyrights.


The Library collects a wide variety of materials in print and electronic format and makes them available to the staff and students at the University in keeping with national Copyright Law and the interpretations adhered to by the Medical Library Association and the American Library Association. The library complies fully with copyright law in its collection development activities, its electronic licensing of products and in its borrowing and lending activities.

Copyright Law and Policy at the University

The copyright law of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia governs the making of reproductions of copyrighted material, including photocopying, printing, and downloading.

Any individual who uses such a reproduction for purposes in excess of "fair use" may be liable for copyright infringement. Learn more about copyright law and Intellectual Property (IP) rights by perusing the information compiled by University Library staff.

Under certain conditions specified in the law, libraries and archives are authorized to furnish a photocopy or other reproduction. One of these specified conditions is that the photocopy or reproduction is not to be 'used for any purpose other than private study, scholarship, or research.' If a user makes a request for, or later uses, a photocopy or reproduction for purposes in excess of 'fair use,' that user may be liable for copyright infringement.

This institution reserves the right to refuse to accept a copying order if, in its judgment, fulfillment of the order would involve violation of copyright law.

Use of some databases may also be restricted by license agreement with the data provider. Specific information is posted with some databases, but most are limited to use by faculty, students, and staff of the University

Obtaining Permission to Use Copyright Works

The Library helps students, faculty, and staff members at the University seek copyright permissions needed in conjunction with teaching and research. We are available to help you even if your copyright permission request is not related to library use.

Copyright Law in Saudi Arabia

Intellectual Property
(Info-Prod Research (Middle East) Ltd.

Saudi law protects the rights of nationals and foreigners in the field of intellectual property. Every natural or legal person that suffers injury resulting from trademark law infringement may claim damages. Expert proceedings regarding the infringement are permissible, and damages for trademark and patent infringements are punitive and provide compensation for the injured.

Intellectual property rights are also indirectly protected by the provisions of the Regulations for Combating of Commercial Fraud, which enable Saudi authorities to impose numerous sanctions for the production of counterfeit products or unlicensed copies of products, which include, inter alia, seizure and destruction of such products, imposing monetary fined up to SR 100,000 for violation of the provisions of the regulations.

The burden of proof in intellectual property cases lies with the plaintiff, and it is an onerous responsibility, unless the unlawful products are seized. Under Saudi law, documentary evidence does not supplant oral evidence, but the two combined may support each other. In trademark cases, discovery may provide the injured party with material and documentary evidence which alleviates the burden of proof.

Orders are enforced in respect of payment of money by effecting seizure against the party losing the case. With regard to prohibitory injunctions and writs of mandamus, orders are submitted to civil right directorates of the Interior Ministry to execute. Non-compliance with such orders may result in the imprisonment of the offender and the seizure of his assets.

Copyright Law
(Abu-Ghazaleh Intellectual Property

The copyright law in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was issued as per Royal Decree No. M/41 dated August 30, 2003 and published in the Official Gazette No. 3959 dated September 19, 2003.

The Implementing Regulations of the law were published in the Official Gazette (Um-Al-Qura) dated June 4, 2004 and entered into force on August 2, 2004.

Protection is granted to authors whose works of art are expressed in writing, sound, drawing, photography or motion pictures and computer software. The rights of the author are protected for his lifetime and for a period of 50 years after his death.

The protection shall cover all intellectual works whether they are literary, scientific or artistic of any type as far as the distribution of the same in Saudi Arabia is allowed.

Foreign intellectual works are protected in accordance with the international conventions Saudi Arabia is a member therein.

The law incorporates stringent penalties to be imposed on Intellectual Property infringers. These penalties include financial fines reaching up to 250.000 Saudi Riyals, closing the violating establishment, confiscation of all copies of the work and imprisonment for a period not exceeding 6 months.

No registration procedures of copyright are available in Saudi Arabia. According to the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works, registration in the home country extends to all member states.

However, any printed materials or computer programs can be distributed in Saudi Arabia only after receiving an approval from the Ministry of Information. For this purpose, a local distributor is essential. The distributor should obtain the necessary approval locally.

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is a member of the Universal Copyright Convention and the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works.

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