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Joining us 

If you are thinking about becoming a member of PRS for Music yet have some queries, you may find the information you need here.

Do I need to join?

How do I join?

How long is the application process?

What is the difference between PRS for Music, PRS and MCPS?

What are the benefits of joining PRS for Music?

How do I qualify for publisher membership?

How do I qualify for writer membership?

Do the whole band join or just one person?

All the members of my band contribute to the writing of our songs. Is it possible for us to join as a group, or must we join individually?

Can I register as a band name?

How far back can royalty payments be backdated?

I'm sending my songs to various record labels. Do I need to be a member of PRS or MCPS at this stage?

Who can claim royalties?

I've just produced some tracks for my friend's band. Should I join either MCPS or PRS?

Someone has released a cover of my song on their album; am I likely to receive a royalty?

I've just joined a covers band which has been offered a monthly residency at our local pub. Can we earn any money by becoming PRS members?

How much does it cost to join MCPS and PRS?

Do I need to pay the admission fees upfront?

Why is there an administration fee to join PRS?

Does registering my works with PRS for Music mean my copyright is protected?

I am already a member of another society, can I join PRS for Music?

A relative who is a PRS for Music member has died, what do I do?

What will be my responsibilities as a member of PRS for Music?

If I join, does that mean PRS for Music owns my music?

Do I need to join?

We offer two categories of membership to PRS for Music:

Writer - You should consider joining as a writer member if you are a creator of an original song or piece of music (including writing lyrics and musical notation).

If your music is being broadcast on television, radio, or online, being performed live in concert, or played in public, we can collect your royalties for you. You should also consider applying for MCPS writer membership if your music has been commercially released by a record company, recorded into a radio or TV programme, recorded in an audio-visual or multimedia production, or used online.

Publisher – If you have entered into an agreement with a writer to exploit their works to benefit both parties, you should consider joining as a publisher member.

If the music in your catalogue is currently being broadcast on television, radio, or online, being performed live in concert, or played in public, we can collect your royalties for you as a publisher of these works. You should also consider applying for MCPS publisher membership if the music in your catalogue has been commercially released by a record company, recorded into a radio or TV programme, recorded in an audio-visual or multimedia production, or used online.

Visit our Categories of Membership page to find out more information on the different PRS for Music memberships.

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How do I join?

If you want to join PRS for Music please visit our ‘Join Us’ page and fill in our online application. Follow the steps until completion, and as we need your signature to complete your application, at the end of the application you will need to print off the form, sign it and send it to us for processing. Please note that it takes up to 28 days to process applications once the hard-copy is received.

Join PRS for Music

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How long is the application process?

Once you have completed the online application process and posted in the signed hard-copy, it can take up to 28 days to process applications once the hard-copy is received in our offices.

Please note that you have up to 6 months from completing the application online to post in the signed hard-copy – after this time your application will be automatically cancelled and the Admission Fee will not be refunded.

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What is the difference between PRS for Music, PRS and MCPS?

PRS and MCPS are two separate collection societies that operate together as PRS for Music.

PRS collects and distributes royalties for musical works that have been performed or played. MCPS collects and distributes royalties for musical works that have been reproduced or copied.

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What are the benefits of joining PRS for Music?

Whether joining PRS for Music and MCPS as a writer or publisher, you will benefit from fast, efficient and accurate collection and payment of your royalties. We are the most cost effective society in Europe and offer services tailored to your requirements. For more information on the benefits of joining us (including our quarterly magazine and exclusive offers and events) please visit this page.

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How do I qualify for publisher membership?

Please refer to the Categories of Membership for information on how to join.

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How do I qualify for writer membership?

Please refer to the Categories of Membership for information on how to join.

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Do the whole band join or just one person?

Everybody who has written lyrics and/or music should join PRS.

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All the members of my band contribute to the writing of our songs. Is it possible for us to join as a group, or must we join individually?

In respect of both MCPS and PRS, each writer within a band needs to apply for individual membership.

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Can I register as a band name?

You need to register under your own name. However, it would be helpful if you include information about the bands you are part of during the application process.

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How far back can royalty payments be backdated?

To claim royalties from a previous time period you will need to make a back-claim. How far back you can back-claim depends upon the specifics of the musical work. For newer members, the back-claim period depends on the effective date of joining.

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I'm sending my songs to various record labels. Do I need to be a member of PRS or MCPS at this stage?

No. The time to consider PRS membership is when one of your songs has been broadcast, performed live, or played in public. Similarly you should consider MCPS membership when one of your songs has been released by a record company (other than your own).

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Who can claim royalties?

A song is traditionally a combination of music and lyrics - people who create these lyrics and/or music are often called ‘composer’, ‘writer’, or ‘author’. The creators of the lyrics and/ or music can claim royalties. If you are someone who takes pieces of other tracks/CDs/peoples music and combines them into something new then you're not a composer, writer, author and you can't claim any royalties.

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I've just produced some tracks for my friend's band. Should I join either MCPS or PRS?

No. Membership of both societies is only relevant to the composers and songwriters of the music. However, if a writer agrees that your production work justifies a writing credit on their songs, then you should consider applying.

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Someone has released a cover of my song on their album; am I likely to receive a royalty?

If it's a commercial release, mechanical royalties will be due for the use of work. If you are currently unpublished you should consider becoming a writer member of MCPS in order to receive these royalties.

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I've just joined a covers band which has been offered a monthly residency at our local pub. Can we earn any money by becoming PRS members?

No. Any royalties generated by these performances would be distributed to the original songwriters/publishers of the works being played. Please submit a set list following each gig using the so that royalties are distributed to the writers/publishers.

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How much does it cost to join MCPS and PRS?

Current administration fees are:
MCPS: £100 for writer membership / £400 for publisher membership, including VAT.
PRS: £100 for writer membership / £400 for publisher membership, including VAT.< back to top

Do I need to pay the administration fee upfront?

The PRS writer administration fee will be payable during the online application process.

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Why is there an administration fee to join PRS?

We charge an administration fee when PRS writers join to cover the administrative costs of processing their applications and initial membership support.

PRS writer members can earn the administration fee back in various ways.  For example, a few plays on national radio, seventeen gigs claimed through the gigs and clubs scheme or tens of thousands of plays on an online streaming service.

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Does registering my works with PRS for Music mean my copyright is protected?

Currently, no official form of copyright registration is available. In the UK, all original music is protected by copyright from the time it is recorded/written down in some format. Registering your works with PRS for Music enables you to be correctly paid for the broadcast or performance of your songs.

Read our overview of copyright View a more detailed guide on copyright law

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I am already a member of another society, can I join PRS for Music?

You can only be part of one collection society for your performance rights in each territory. If you are part of another society and are interested in becoming a PRS for Music member instead, you can check out our benefits page to see what we offer.

If you wish to switch to PRS for Music, please contact your current society first to discuss the matter and arrange for a release date before applying for membership with PRS for Music.

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A relative who is a PRS for Music member has died, what do I do?

We will need to see a sealed office copy of the Grant of Probate (or Letters of Administration) issued within the United Kingdom. Please email the Member Admissions team with the contact details of the person responsible for administering the estate of the deceased and we will be in touch with full instructions.

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What will be my responsibilities as a member of PRS for Music?

In order to pay you royalties we need you to set up an online account and register your music with us. Also, please notify us when you have a change in personal details, such as your bank account, address and tax residency.

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If I join, does that mean PRS for Music owns my music?

No. By joining PRS for Music you are allowing us to be the sole collector of your performing right royalties. You will still have ownership of your songs.

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