Copyright and Royalties
Estates are often the recipient of continuing “residuals” of monies that continue to come in post death for typically artistic endeavours, all due to the law of copyright.
For an explanation I went to the following government website to explain copyright.
You will see that it is relatively easy to assert a claim of copyright over these typically musical artistic, or written accomplishments that produce continued sales. The estate of deceased celebrities such as Marilyn Monroe annually receive funds due to copyright that by far exceed any amount of income that the lead actress turned during her lifetime.
In defining copyright, it notes:
If you produce original literary, dramatic, musical or artistic work, you’ll want to learn more about what copyright is and how you can use it to your advantage.
Copyright is the exclusive legal right to produce, reproduce, publish or perform an original literary, artistic, dramatic or musical work. The creator is usually the copyright owner. However, an employer- for example, a film studio-may have copyright in works created by employees unless there is an agreement in place stating otherwise.
When you own the copyright in a work, you control how it is used in order to protect its value. Others who want to use the work have to buy or otherwise get your permission.
Generally, an original work is automatically protected by copyright the moment you create it. By registering your copyright, you receive a certificate issued by the Canadian Intellectual Property Office that can be used in court as evidence that you own it.
Your copyright exists in Canada during your lifetime and for 50 years following your death. After that, the work is in the public domain, and anyone can use it. This is true for most works, but there are exceptions.