Open main menu

Commons:Copyright rules by territory/Portugal

< Commons:Copyright rules by territory
Copyright rules of Portugal
Flag of Portugal
Map of Portugal
Standard Life + 70 years
Anonymous Publish + 70
Common licence tags {{PD-old-auto}}
Berne convention 29 March 1911
Univ. Copyright Convention 25 December 1956
WTO member 1 January 1995
URAA restoration date 1 January 1996
WIPO treaty 14 March 2010

This page provides an overview of copyright rules of Portugal relevant to uploading works into Wikimedia Commons. Note that any work originating in Portugal must be in the public domain, or available under a free license, in both Portugal and the United States before it can be uploaded to Wikimedia Commons. If there is any doubt about the copyright status of a work from Portugal, refer to the relevant laws for clarification.


Governing laws

Portugal has been a member of the Berne Convention since 29 March 1911, the WIPO treaty since 14 March 2010 and the World Trade Organization since 1 January 1995, as well as a signatory to various other international treaties.[1] As of 2018 the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), an agency of the United Nations, listed the Code of Copyright and Related Rights (as amended up to Decree-Law No. 100/2017 of August 23, 2017) as the main IP law enacted by the legislature of Portugal.[1] WIPO holds the text of this law in their WIPO Lex database.[2]

General rules

Works are protected 70 years after the death of the author or last surviving author, or 70 years after publication if the author is anonymous. The author's moral rights, including and in particular the right to attribution, are perpetual, even after the copyright expires (§9.3).


All photographs taken until 30 June 1970 are in the public domain in Portugal, as Decreto-Lei n.° 334/97 de 27 de Novembro, which established the current 70 year protection on photographic works, as well as the 25 year protection on non-published public domain works, specifically applies retroactively only to works that were under protection in EU countries as of 1 July 1995 (§5). In the previous Law No. 114/91 of September 3, 1991, copyright for all photographic works expired after 25 years after the work had been carried out. Copyright of non-published works was specifically voided 25 years after creation of the work. (§34).

In order to have copyright, photographic works are required to be published displaying a) the name of the photographer, b) in the case of photographs of works of plastic art, the name of the author of the work photographed. (§167 of the current 2017 copyright law). Failure to comply this voids the copyright of the work, unless bad faith on the reproduction can be proved. Jurisprudence (2011).


See {{PD-Portugal-URAA}} for compatibility between URAA and works in the public domain in Portugal.


Copyright tags

See also Commons:Copyright tags

  • {{PD-Portugal-URAA}} for compatibility between URAA and works in the public domain in Portugal.
  • {{IPPAR}} – for images courtesy of IGESPAR.

Freedom of panorama

See also Commons:Freedom of Panorama

 OK {{FoP-Portugal}}

Portuguese copyright law allows the use of works permanently installed at public locations. The law explicitly mentions buildings and sculptures as examples of such works (§75(2)q). "Use" includes taking a photograph of such a work and publishing it (§68). However, according to the Berne three-step test, the allowed uses must not conflict with a normal exploitation of the work, nor unreasonably prejudice the legitimate interests of the rights holder (§75(4): "...não devem atingir a exploração normal da obra, nem causar prejuízo injustificado dos interesses legítimos do autor"). Also, "The free uses mentioned in the preceding article [§75] shall be accompanied by a) the indication, wherever possible, of the name of the author and of the editor, the title of the work and other circumstances that identify them...."

According to at least one legal scholar, "public location" ("locais públicos") includes public interiors within the context of Portuguese law.[3]

Threshold of originality

See also Commons:Threshold of originality

w:File:Juventude Socialista Portugal.png was deleted as it was considered to be above the threshold of originality.


In Portugal photographs have been consistently specifically required to have a significant degree of creativity in order to be copyrighted. §164 of the current 2017 copyright law states that "the choice of a photograph's subject and the conditions of its creation must be deemed to be a personal artistic creation by the author before a photograph may qualify for protection".

Court cases
  • Landscape photograph: Ruled as without originality. In 2009, (2nd instance court) Tribunal da Relação de Lisboa ruled as void of copyright for lack of artistic creativity a landscape photograph the author was claiming copyright on due to his choice of the setting, light and other conditions. It was considered by the court "a vulgar photograph resultant from the mere choice of an object, such as a city council building and part of a group of trees, without a minimum of creativity". See also this article at the Instituto Portugues de Fotografia.
  • Heart reproduction commissioned to a laboratory in order to be presented in an exposition: Ruled as without originality. (2004)
  • Clothing/Fashion: Ruled as without originality. (2017)



  • Portugal Copyright and Related Rights (Neighboring Rights)[1], WIPO: World Intellectual Property Organization, 2018
  • Code of Copyright and Related Rights (as amended up to Decree-Law No. 100/2017 of August 23, 2017)[2], Portugal, 2017
Caution: The above description may be inaccurate, incomplete and/or out of date, so must be treated with caution. Before you upload a file to Wikimedia Commons you should ensure it may be used freely.