Songwriters Contract Law and Legal Definition

Songwriters Contract is a contract entered into between a publisher and a song writer to acquire the rights to a songwriter's musical composition for publishing purposes. By a songwriter contract, a songwriter transfers to a publisher all rights, title and interest in and to a song, in return for royalty payments. It will be subject to any existing agreements between parties and ASCAP (American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers).

The terms in a song writer’s contract may vary. But usually contained terms are that the publisher may agree not to grant any party a license to use the composition without the consent of the songwriter. There can be a reversion clause in the contract providing to terminate the songwriter contract if the music publisher fails to secure a release of a commercial recording of the song within a particular period of time. When a reversion takes place, all rights are returned to the songwriter.