Do I have to deposit a copy of my work?
Federal law requires any work being protected by copyright law to be deposited with the Library of Congress. Specifically, within three months of a work’s publication, the author should deposit two copies of the work with the Library of Congress, even if the author is not seeking a federal copyright registration. This is for archival purposes, as the Library of Congress is charged with archiving copies of every work authored in the United States. While there is no punishment for failing to make the required deposit, the Library of Congress may make a request for deposited copies, and failure to comply with this request can lead to a fine.
In addition to this requirement, an author must also make a deposit when applying for a federal copyright registration. Specifically, if the work being registered is unpublished, the author must supply one copy of the work, and if the work is published then the author must supply two copies.