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The Canada Council for the Arts distributes payments to over 17,000 Canadian authors annually through the Public Lending Right (PLR) Program as compensation for free public access to their books in Canadian public libraries.

The Canada Council works with the expertise of a permanent advisory board, known as the Public Lending Right Commission, to define the program’s criteria and promote the program among eligible authors, illustrators and translators.

The Public Lending Right Commission

The Public Lending Right Commission is made up of writers, translators, librarians and publishers. The Commission also includes non-voting representatives from the Department of Canadian Heritage, the Canada Council for the Arts, Library and Archives Canada, and Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec.

Supporting Authors

Over 17,000 Canadian authors benefit annually from the Public Lending Right through direct payments ranging from $50 to over $3,000 a year.

Eligible work includes original writing, translation, illustration, and photography contained in library books across a range of literary and scholarly genres.

Supporting Libraries

As a result of Public Lending Right payments, Canadian public libraries benefit from a strengthened relationship with authors, who are rewarded for contributing to our shared cultural life. The PLR thus contributes to nourishing a strong literary ecosystem for all.

Supporting Readers

By supporting Canadian authors and libraries the Public Lending Right is also supporting Canadian readers. We support public access to Canadian content!

How to Register

The Public Lending Right Program is open to Canadian authors who meet the program’s eligibility criteria. To register, authors must complete and mail in the registration form available from the Public Lending Right website during the annual registration period (15 February to 1 May).