Why does Songtrust charge a $100 registration fee?

Why does Songtrust charge an up-front fee if we’re earning revenue on your collected publishing royalties?

To become a Songtrust client, and access our best-in-class global publishing rights administration service, you’ll pay a one-time $100 per songwriter registration fee, and Songtrust will keep 15% of the royalties we collect. Why do we charge the up-front fee if we’re also earning revenue on your collected publishing royalties?

It’s a good question. The reason Songtrust needs to charge an up-front registration fee is because we allow everyone to join. There’s no barrier to entry with Songtrust, like there is with most publishers or administrators - and you can sign up with 2 songs or 2000 songs for that same, flat, one-time $100 fee. Because of this flexibility, we need to make sure that even if a new client never earns any royalties, we cover our costs to get their catalog set up.

Even though Songtrust’s systems are efficient, the initial onboarding for a songwriter and catalog is the most labor-intensive part of the process, takes the most time, and undergoes multiple reviews. It’s in those first few months when new clients have the most questions and may require the most support from our Client Services team. It’s in the first few months, once songs are ready for global registration, when things like counterclaims and conflicts are raised, which require our Copyright teams to work with the client and our pay sources to resolve them.

And once the song is registered, we have yet more work to do, in royalty collection, matching, and processing; auditing our pay sources and making income tracking claims to ensure our clients collect everything they’ve earned; and growing our global network of pay source relationships.

As you can imagine, a larger catalog has more potential for complexity. So we cover our bases with our registration fee, to ensure that Songtrust can keep going even if some of our clients aren’t yet earning enough that our administration fee covers their setup costs.

With Songtrust, we only grow if you grow. If you make money as a songwriter, we benefit as your administrator.

You can sign up for Songtrust here.

Interested in learning more? Check out our Blog post on the top ten reasons you need Songtrust.


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