Photocopying or printing the words of Christmas Carols including print music.

If you want to copy the music and/or lyrics of Christmas carols, there are a few things to think about. Copying can include photocopying, scanning, transcribing, photographing and also putting the words or music into presentations (such as PowerPoint or overhead slides).

  • If the carol is traditional or in the public domain, you may copy it without permission. You do need to check though if you are copying a published edition of the words or music, that the particular publication is more than 25 years old. If it is not, then the edition is still protected by copyright and you will need to get permission from the copyright owner to use it. 

  • If the carol or published edition containing it is still protected by copyright then you must obtain permission from the copyright owner (usually a publisher) to copy it.

  • To make your own arrangement or change the lyrics of a copyright carol you must obtain permission from the music publisher that owns the work.

View a list of Christmas Carols by copyright status:

Download full list

If you don’t see the carols you want to copy on our list, you can contact us through our research page.

Need more information?

We’re here to help you, please contact us on (02) 9935 7900 or

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