Simplified declaration for companies broadcasting music

In some cases, companies that broadcast music are required to pay a fee. The declaration relating thereto was recently simplified.

At the end of 2009 copyright collecting societies (SABAM, SIMIM and URADEX) and employers’ federations (VBO, UNIZO and NSZ) agreed to clarify various issues regarding the fee that needs to be paid.

If a company broadcasts music e.g. in spaces only accessible to employees, in public spaces (accessible for non-employees), over the phone (waiting music) or on their website, it should pay two types of fees for the music which is not royalty-free:

  • The copyright fee (for authors and composers); and
  • The Fair Remuneration (for performing artists and music producers).

Until recently companies had to file separate declarations. As of 14 January 2010, only one declaration for the two fees is necessary. This can be done on the website www.eengemaakteaangifte.be.

Invoicing will still be separate. If aligned companies wish to file the declaration simultaneously, the parent company may file a group-declaration for its subsidiaries.

Companies with a maximum of eight employees are exempted to pay the fee for music broadcasted in spaces which are only accessible to employees.

With regard to music broadcasted in public places, over the phone or on the website, this exemption does not apply.

It should be noted that companies making the declaration voluntarily will benefit from a 30% discount during the first 3 years.