How do I join CCLI?

CCLI has 3 programmes available for songwriters who’s music is used for congregational singing. These programmes are the Church Copyright Licence, Music Reproduction Licence and SongSelect programs and are available to churches and schools and other Christian ministries.

The following frequently asked questions will assist in determining whether CCLI is the right choice for you.

Do you have songs currently being used in churches?

CCLI registers works that are in use by churches for congregational singing.

What are the Church Copyright Licence, Music Reproduction Licence and SongSelect programs?

The Church Copyright Licence allows a licensed church to:

  • Make bulletin/mass/service inserts
  • Create slides, transparencies and electronic files (PowerPoint etc)
  • Make congregational songbooks, Bible study song sheets, chord charts
  • Record worship services for ministry purposes within the church
  • Make customised arrangements (flute, trumpet etc) when no published version is available to them.

The Music Reproduction Licence allows a licensed church to:

  • Copy song from an authorised published edition of a commercially published songbook or multi media enhanced CD. CCLI also acknowledge the production copyright (P) in the product and a royalty is paid to both parties i.e. the song owner and the product owner.

Depending on the subscription held, SongSelect allows a church to:

  • Download lyrics from thousands of songs
  • Listen to available sound samples
  • Print off available lead sheets, chord sheets and/or hymn sheets
  • Play and transpose music using the music player.

How are royalties determined?

Church Copyright and Music Reproduction Licences:

The basis for royalty payment is church copying, and reporting such copying activities to CCLI during the respective report period (all churches are required to lodge an annual report).

The criteria for copyright owners to earn royalties are largely dependent upon their songs being used in a number of churches.


Royalties from SongSelect are determined by the prints recorded for each song.

Royalties are paid twice annually (February 15 and August 15) for each programme.

Royalties are then calculated and paid out when they exceed AUD$5.00.

Is there a fee to join CCLI?

No, there is no fee to join CCLI and no fee to register your songs.

What is a ‘copyright notice’?

Under ‘common law’ rights a work is copyrighted as soon as it is expressed in a tangible form (print or sound recording). Technically you don’t even have to include a copyright notice to gain copyright protection under the law, though it is suggested that you do include one, otherwise any potential infringing party may claim they didn’t know the work was copyrighted. Additionally, a copyright notice lets others know the work is copyrighted and may discourage them from using it illegally.

To give notice, you should include the word copyright or the letter c in a circle (©), the year of first publication, and the name of the author or the owner of the copyright on all publications.

When should I consider licensing my copyrights through CCLI?

When your song has been published (made available to the public) in a tangible form (printed music or recorded on a CD).

A church team of writers should determine a copyright catalogue name (e.g. Hillsong Music, Maranatha Music, My Church Name Music).

Individual writers may register using their own name.

What is involved when affiliating with CCLI?

The first step in affiliating with CCLI as a song owner is to sign the CCLI Regional Owner Agreements for each prgramme; you will then be able to register your songs with CCLI.

If you are ready to enter into an agreement with CCLI please email our copyright department with your mailing address and contact details and request a ‘Song Owner Agreement Pack’.