Frequently Asked Questions - Licensees

We've compiled the following list of frequently asked questions to help you understand this program.

Q. Why do I need a license?
A. While U.S. Copyright Law provides a "religious service exemption," this exemption only covers the performance for works of a religious nature in a religious service, and no matter the type of music, may not include the recording, printing or display of lyrics, music, and other copyrighted items.  While you can contact individual publishers directly to obtain their permission to use their songs, this is very time consuming, and may not guarantee your ability to use their songs.

Q. Our church has a music license with another organization.  Do I need a license with emPower?
A. Most independent publishers of New Thought and other inspirational compositions do not belong to other licensing organizations.  For the few that do, you need to carefully check that your agreement covers your intended use of the compositions.

Q. What music does this license cover?
A. It covers compositions by Publishers who have permitted us to grant usage licenses for their catalog of compositions on their behalf.  You can find a list of participating Publishers on this website.

Q. What does this license allow me to do?
A. For music of copyright owners covered by this license, you can:
a)    Play CDs and recordings
b)    Print words and/or music in programs, bulletins, and songsheets
c)    Project the words and/or
d)    Record and copy live recordings of church services and to sell CDs, cassette tapes or other media of such recordings, so long as the recordings are not sold for more than $5.00 (five dollars) for each audio recording, and $10.00 (ten dollars) for each video recording,
e)    Record and copy the Compositions for rehearsal purposes
f)    Record and transmit the Compositions as part of pod-casts of church services.
g)    Record and synchronize the Compositions as part of televised versions of church services

Q. Can I make modifications to the Compositions?
A. No.  Not without written permission from the Publisher.

Q. How much is the license fee?
A. The annual fee is based on the size of your congregation, per the “Licensee Pricing” table at  Other organizations wishing to obtain licensing should contact emPower for details.

Q. What are licensing fees used for?
A. Licensing fees are used for two main purposes:  1. to compensate publishers for the use of their compositions; and 2. to administer the Music Rights program, facilitating the process for churches to legally use Publishers’ compositions, fostering and encouraging the use of New Thought, positive, uplifting music in churches and other venues.

Q. Can I pay by check?
A. Yes.  While we encourage you to pay by credit card online, you may send a check made payable to "emPower Music & Arts" to:

Sue Riley
3932 Watson Dr
New Port Richey, FL  34655

Please make sure that the name of your organization is on the check, and indicate that it is for your Music Rights license.

Q. What reporting is required?
A. Simply keep track of the compositions you use, and submit your report within fourteen (14) days after the end of each calendar quarter.  You can access necessary forms and reporting tools on this website.

Q. When using music, what acknowledgements are required?
A. Publishers must be acknowledged for their Compositions as follows: “Words and Music by _______________, Copyright [Year] by _____________________.”
Details for each publisher can be found on this website.