Author’s Addenda

In many cases, authors are asked to sign publishing agreements that limit or undermine their ability to use their works in the future. Authors can use the addenda below to retain rights to use works they have authored. 

These addenda are designed to be consistent with University of Michigan copyright policy and with the expectations of many authors in our academic community. 

The addenda for articles and books are different. If you are not sure which is most appropriate for your project, take a moment to read through both. 

We also provide a brief addendum that applies in the special case where your only concern is compliance with the National Institutes of Health Public Access Policy.

Working with your publisher

These addenda must be signed by the publisher in order to be effective. It’s best to keep a signed copy of your publishing agreement and a signed copy of the addendum for your records. 

In general, some publishers will not be willing to negotiate and some will be much more flexible. Consider talking to colleagues who have previously worked with your publisher to get a better sense of what it might be willing to do. If your publisher is not willing to negotiate, you may want to consider working with a different publisher who would be more receptive to your concerns.

Adding to your addendum

If there are things that you want to be able to do with your work that are not already permitted by U.S. law or the addendum — or that are prohibited in the publishing agreement — then you should consider adding those things to the addendum you are working with. 

It is important to be careful when making changes to the addenda, to avoid unintended consequences. Some provisions are relatively easy to modify, such as the 12-month embargo in the addendum for books (“After a period of twelve (12) months from the date of publication…”). If you negotiate an embargo of a different length, simply replace “twelve (12)” with the new number.

Questions about the addenda or negotiating your publishing agreement? Contact the Library Copyright Office at

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