Music and broadcast licences for your business


If you play or perform music in a public place (which is anywhere except a family or domestic gathering) you will usually need a licence, called TheMusicLicence, from PPL PRS Ltd.

If you play audiovisual content, such as TV shows and films outside the private home, (regardless of whether an admission or other fee is charged), you will usually need a licence from the Motion Picture Licensing Company (MPLC).

This is because unless you have obtained a licence from the above organisations prior to playing the music, TV shows or films in public, you are likely to be in breach of copyright laws.

TheMusicLicence from PPL PRS Ltd

PPL and PRS for Music are both collective management organisations. They issue licences and collect royalties for certain uses of copyright-protected music, on behalf of their many thousands of members. They then distribute those royalties to members.

PPL and PRS for Music have recently set up PPL PRS Ltd to offer a single joint music licence, on behalf of them both, for playing and performing music in public.

How much will TheMusicLicence and/or MPLC licence cost?

The cost of the licence will vary depending upon the type of premises, the size of the premises and the nature and extent to which the music or audiovisual content is used. You should contact PPL PRS Ltd and MPLC for further information.

What happens with my existing account with PRS or PPL?

PPL PRS Ltd will be in touch to transition you to TheMusicLicence when your existing PPL and/or PRS for Music licence expire(s). 

What happens if I don’t obtain a licence from PPL PRS Ltd?

You will be in breach of copyright if you fail to obtain a relevant licence. PPL PRS Ltd and MPLC could take legal action against you and you could be ordered to pay costs and damages. Please note, a TV licence does not allow you to play copyright music in public, even if it is just in the background at work.

You’ll find more information on TheMusicLicence issued by PPL PRS Ltd on their website and for detail on the ‘MPLC Umbrella Licence’ click here.