I make digital copies of CD/DVD/Vinyls I buy and use those copies myself (on my phone/tablet/laptop). I am free to use those copies because I purchased the physical version.

If I lose or break the physical version am I still allowed to use the digital versions?

  • @NateEldredge, thanks I added the Belgium-tag
    – J_rite
    Commented Nov 15, 2017 at 14:46
  • You might want to break this down into 2 separate questions because it might get answered better. "Is it illegal to make copies of physical purchased CD/DVD/Vinyls?" and then after you get that answer ask this "Is it illegal to listen to backups of music after selling the original?" Commented Nov 15, 2017 at 15:04
  • @LateralTerminal I know it is legal to make them and use them as long as I have the physical one too. I just need to know what happens when I'm no longer the owner of a (working) physical version
    – J_rite
    Commented Nov 15, 2017 at 15:08
  • I think you should ask either "If I lose or break the physical version am I still allowed to use the digital versions?" or "what if I sell them second-hand?" Just so your question is more focused. I find it's better if you ask 2 different questions because you will get a more concise answer. Just a suggestion though Commented Nov 15, 2017 at 15:12
  • @LateralTerminal I removed the selling part of the question
    – J_rite
    Commented Nov 16, 2017 at 8:32

1 Answer 1


Links in French, sorry, I don't know Dutch/Flemish.

Yes, the law allowing you to make the copies in the first place doesn't require maintaining the source.

Article XI.190 of the Code de droit économique:

Lorsque l'oeuvre a été licitement divulguée, l'auteur ne peut interdire : [...] 9° la reproduction d'oeuvres, à l'exception des partitions musicales, effectuée dans le cercle de famille et réservée à celui-ci;

Roughly translated,

Once the work has been legally distributed, the author may not forbid: [...] 9. The reproduction of works, with the exception of sheet music, made within and reserved for the family circle.

For more on private copy in Belgium, see this government resource.

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