This document serves as a summary of the COSCAP Distribution Rules, specifically the policies and methods employed for performing right distributions effective 28 January 2017.  It is not intended to be an exhaustive document.  For the complete COSCAP Distribution Rules, please click below.

General Distribution Policy Principles

The COSCAP Council of Directors is responsible for determining the COSCAP distribution rules and methods. The underlying policy governing COSCAP distributions is found in the COSCAP By-Law No. 5 in its provisions 4.12.  The principles applied are: transparency and non-discrimination in terms of payments to local and international rights holders.

The COSCAP Distribution Rules are developed in accordance with the standards and guidelines provided by the International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers (CISAC), the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) and any other relevant body.

Usage data is applied by COSCAP to identify the works and recordings which have been used and for which rights holders are to be compensated.  However, in some cases it is not always possible to obtain complete information from licensees and for this reason, COSCAP utilises various methods to gather information including the use of broadcast performance logs, samples from various premises and events, live performance lists and digital monitoring systems.  Whatever method is used it is guided by the need to ensure that it is cost effective and practical.  To guide the use of samples, COSCAP employs a statistical formula developed by the University of the West Indies specifically for the analysis of performance data.

Distribution Schedule

COSCAP has multiple distributions annually for different revenue sources for both copyright and related rights.  The schedule is published annually on the COSCAP website.

The minimum total payment threshold is BB$50.00 for local members and BB$200.00 for international rights holders.  If payments fall below these thresholds they are held until it has been met.  However, each member is provided a statement each distribution period to account for the payment being held.

  1. Performing right royalties for the Broadcasting, General and Cable re-transmission pools may be distributed twice yearly. There may be a period of 6 months between any 2 distributions.
  2. Festivals and Major Live Events royalties are distributed within ninety (90) days of the receipt of full payment for the Festival or Major Live Event.
  3. Interim or supplementary distributions are also carried out including incoming royalties from sister CMOs.

Distribution Revenue

The amount available for distribution may include:

  1. licensing revenues less administrative expenses and provisions for reserved funds;
  2. royalties received from affiliated societies less administrative expenses;
  3. interest earned from investments after the deduction of administration fees received during the relevant period;
  4. the application of credits allocated to the various distribution pools.

Distribution Pools

COSCAP licences many different types of music users and these are organised in pools for distribution purposes based on:

  1. Similarity in the type of music use
  2. The distribution methodology to be applied

Examples of pools include:

  • Radio broadcast
  • Live Performances
  • General
  • Festivals

Distribution Methodologies

COSCAP uses the following distribution methodologies depending on the availability of data and cost.

  1. Direct Allocation/Census – Performance data is collected for every single performance.  For practical purposes this method is used mainly for major live events (with a licence value of at least $5,000 VAT exclusive) as it would not be possible to gather this information from say, all licensed restaurants playing recorded background music.
  2. Sample – This is where COSCAP collects a representative sample, using a statistical model of music performance where there is a high volume of music use and it would be very expensive to collect census data.
  3. Analogy – Where it is not feasible to use the census or sample method because for example the information is not readily available but it is reasonable to use data from another source which is similar.  For example, for music use in retail shops radio broadcast data is used as this is generally representative of current popular music.

Distribution Performance Credits


Those performances analysed for the radio broadcast distribution other than

jingles, advertisements, programme identifiers and public service announcements shall receive 1 credit point for each performance.


When any work is performed as a Theme, it shall receive 60% of a Credit for the first 250 performances regardless of the number of actual performances and for all additional such performances in the relevant distribution period it shall receive an additional 6% of a credit per hour regardless of the number of actual such performances in the remainder of the program.

Advertising Promotional and Public Service Announcements, Logos and Jingles

Performance of any work in conjunction with an advertising or public service announcement (other than a Jingle) shall receive 12% of a credit regardless of the number of actual such performances during the relevant distribution period.

Performances of any work as a logo shall be credited in the same manner as a Jingle. When any work is performed as a Jingle it shall receive 60% of a credit for the first 250 performances regardless of the number of actual such performances, and for all additional such performances during the relevant distribution period it shall receive an additional 6% of a credit regardless of the number of actual such performances during the relevant distribution period.

Television, Cable & Satellite

The performances analyses for the television broadcast distribution with the exception of commercial jingles, advertisements, programme identifiers and public service announcements shall receive 1 credit point for each performance.

General Distributions

All performances analysed on the basis of analogy with radio broadcasts, live events and Festival events shall receive respectively one credit equal to a performance credit that is ordinarily attributed to a performance in radio distribution, live events distribution and Festivals distribution.

Live Performances

All licensed live performances, other than at Crop-Over Festival events, with licensing revenue of BDS$5,000.00 VAT inclusive or more and for which programme returns have been received, shall receive 8 credit points.

For live events for which there is no admission fee or for which the licence value is less than BDS$5,000.00 VAT inclusive, the credit value shall be 4 credit points.

For Major Live Events for which no licensing fees have been paid the credit value shall be 2 credit points.

Live performances during Festival period shall be credited with 12 credit points except where such events have not been licensed

Royalties Received from Affiliated Organisations

Royalties received from affiliated societies will be distributed to members in the general distribution following receipt, except where the distributable amount exceeds BDS $1,000.00 in which case the amount concerned shall be distributed within 30 days of receipt and verification of the accompanying documentation.

A deduction of 5 percent of net royalties received from affiliated societies in respect of the costs associated with the analysis and processing of the royalty payments shall be made.

Payment in Error

Any amount paid in error to any member may be recovered by COSCAP by recovering that amount from the member or by deducting that amount from any other royalty allocation or distribution payable to the member.

Payment or Ownership Disputes

Where a claim is disputed then the affected royalty share shall be withheld until the dispute is resolved.

Unclaimed Payments

All sums allocated and unclaimed for three years after sending out of COSCAP’s notice to the last known address of the member or person to whom he has directed payment thereof to be made, may be forfeited and credited to such revenue accounts as Council shall from time to time direct and shall thereupon form part of the overall sum available for distribution.

Unidentified Performances

Where COSCAP is unable to identify the person interested in the work for the purpose of paying that person the sum before the expiration of three years from the end of the relevant financial year, the sum shall on the expiration of that period be deemed to be “non-distributable” provided that no sum shall be deemed non-distributable under this Rule where the identity of the person interested in the work has been ascertained or is ascertainable by COSCAP, but that, having verified its records and other readily available records relating to that person, COSCAP has been unable to locate the person interested for the purpose of effecting payment of the sum. Such sum shall be considered “unclaimed” for the purposes of these Distribution Rules and shall be dealt with as provided for by these Rules or alternatively as the Council may direct.

Retroactive Payments

Royalty allocations and distributions duly authorised by the Council are final and shall be binding except when the Council determines that it is necessary to make adjustments as a result of:

  1. a claim by an interested party made within three years of the date of approval of the allocation or distribution concerned; or
  2. any other claim made within three years of the date of approval of the allocation or distribution concerned.

The retroactive claim period for self-reporting systems for Live Performance Returns is limited to one year. That period may on application by the claimant be extended by the Council for a further period not exceeding 1-year in cases where evidence deemed sufficient by the Council is provided in support of the claim and or application.


Awards may be made to members whose works are substantially performed in media not surveyed by COSCAP or whose works have a unique prestige value for which adequate compensation would not otherwise be received, as determined by an independent panel appointed for that purpose by the Council, in a total amount not to exceed one half of one percent (0.5%) of COSCAP’s total annual distributable revenues.

Default allocation to Producers and Performers

In the absence of due notification of the proportional share as between producer and performer of any work COSCAP shall be entitled to apportion the royalty to be shared as between the producer(s) and performer(s) concerned as to 50% to such producer(s) and 50% to such performer(s) as appropriate.

Where COSCAP is not provided with the division of royalty among performers then a default system will be applied whereby there will be a division equal to a total of 100% between all performer-members whose contribution has been duly confirmed. For Featured and Other Featured Performers the default allocation is 65% and for Non-Featured Performers 35%.

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