Book Indexing Fees And Charges

Book Indexing Fees

Indexing fees are based on a “per page” rate, ranging from as little as $3.00 to $10.00 per indexable page which reflects both the time required for indexing and difficulty of the text.

The indexing fee is the “page rate” X the number of indexable pages in the book.

  • An indexable page is any page of the book that carries potential information, including pictures, figures or graphs for the index;
  • Front and back matter are generally not considered “indexable” unless you request that they be indexed

Payment of Indexing Fee

  • Payment for the index is Due Upon Receipt of your invoice. Late payment in excess of 10 days will be charged interest at prime plus 2 percent.
  • Copyright to the index is automatically transferred upon receipt of full payment of the invoice.
  • The invoice for indexing can be paid by either business or personal cheque, or electronic bank transfer.
  • Credit cards, Pay Pal and other forms of credit are not accepted because of the related fees that I would have to incur

U.S Clients and Indexing Fees

  •  Indexing projects done for U.S clients is payable in U.S. dollars.
  •  I have an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) which allows me to be paid in full by U.S clients (without having any part of my income withheld and paid to the Internal Revenue Service.)

Canadian HST is not charged to U.S. client

Factors Which Determine the Book Indexing Fee

When you request a quote for book indexing, the following factors will be considered:

  • Academic, reference and research texts require indexes equal in importance to the textual content, so the time and work involved is greater than simpler text.
  • Difficult and complex text usually requires more index entries per page than simpler text, and therefore requires more time to index.
  • Indexing of figures and tables will require more time to index.
  • Foreign language text and terms may require more time to index.
  • Incorporating typesetting codes will definitely increase time.
  • The length and space requirements for the index can be a factor.
  • The number of indexes required (i.e. subject and author indexes) will be a factor.

The time allowed for writing the index can be a factor. Rush rate may apply

As a general rule of thumb:

Complex academic text requires more work than a basic trade book or textbook, because it requires more time and analysis, and greater number of indexable entries per page

Scheduling your Index

  • The indexer works with many clients and must project manage the various indexing projects.
  • Please allow sufficient time to schedule your indexing project with the indexer.

An estimate of how long it will take to index your book is usually provided along with the indexing fee quotation

Indexing Agreement

  • As a good business practice, a short indexing contract will be prepared and sent to you outlining the indexing fee and related matters. Your signature secures a place in the indexer’s schedule to index your book.
  • Copyright to the index is transferred to you upon full payment of the indexing fee

Re-indexing Charges

  •  Accurate indexing depends on the page numbering remaining stable from the beginning of the indexing process to final printing. Page proofs are required to write an index.
  • If the book’s pagination changes after indexing has begun, additional hourly charges will apply for the time involved to correct the index.
  • Requests for extensive editing and changes to the index will be invoiced on an hourly rate

Rush Rates

Rush fees may be 25% to 50% of the project price

Cancellation or Rescheduling

  • Please keep me posted on any changes in your schedule so we can work together.
  • Jobs that are suddenly canceled or rescheduled with less than 10 days’ notice may result in a penalty of 25% of the originally agreed-upon total for the project

Payment of Indexing Fees and Services


  • The invoice for indexing fees or services is payable upon receipt of the index.
  • Late payment in excess of 10 days will be charged interest at prime plus 2 percent.
  • Transfer of copyright to the index occurs upon receipt of full payment for all related indexing fees.

Payment Responsibility

  • The party that signs the agreement is the party responsible for payment.
  • In some situations, the authors/publisher may be asked for 50% down when the agreement is signed.
  • Canadian law shall govern and enforce this agreement. Any litigation orarbitration between the parties shall take place in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

U.S Clients and Indexing Fees

  • Indexing projects done for U.S clients is payable in U.S. dollars.
  • I have an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) which allows me,to be paid in full by U.S clients (without having any part of my income withheld and paid to the Internal Revenue Service.)
  • Canadian HST is not charged to U.S. client

The Canadian Copyright Act (1985)

  • The Canadian Copyright Act protects original literary, artistic, musical and dramatic works. The copyright owner has the exclusive right to reproduce the work, (or any substantial part of the work) in any material form whatever. For example, the owner of copyright in a book has the right to stop others from making copies of the book, (or any substantial part of the book),  whether the copying is by way of a commercial printer, a photocopy machine, or by way of a computer image/text scanner.
  • Copyright comes into existence automatically, at the time the work was created, and, in the case of most works, it continues until the end of the calendar year in which the author of the work dies (regardless of whether the author has sold or assigned the copyright in the work or not), and continues for an additional period of 50 years.
  • “Moral” rights are protected under Canadian copyright law, and include the author’s right to be associated with the work by name, or pseudonym and the right to remain anonymous, and includes the author’s right to the integrity of the work (that is, the author’s right to stop the work from being distorted , mutilated or modified, to the prejudice of the author’s honour or reputation, or from being used in association with a product, service, cause or institution).
  • Moral rights remain with the author of a work, even where the work, or the copyright in the work, has been sold or assigned. Moral rights continue to exist in a work for the same length of time as do the other copyrights in the work in question.
  • Moral rights may not be assigned, but the author may waive these rights, in whole, or in part. A mere assignment or license of copyright in a work does not, in and of itself, amount to a waiver of moral rights in the work.
  • All assignments and licenses of copyright should include a written waiver of the author’s moral rights.
  • Copyright to a work may be assigned or licensed to others. All assignments and licenses of copyright must be in writing to be valid. The mere transfer of physical possession of a work does not thereby include an assignment of copyright in the work.
  • Copyright may be registered at the Canadian Copyright Office located in Ottawa/Hull. Registration of copyright in a work is not required in Canada, but registration does provide a benefit to the copyright owner, and therefore is recommended. When registering copyright, there is no need to file a copy of the work with the Canadian Copyright Office, as they will only return the
    work to the owner.
  • Freelancers are covered under Section 13(1) of Canada’s Copyright Act (1985), which states states that “the author of a work shall be the first owner of the copyright therein.”
    Under Section 13(4) of Canada’s Copyright Act, the first owner of the copyright of a newly created work can sell the copyright or any part thereof to another person by the law of contract.


  • “Copyright Law in Canada” by Philip B. Kerr.
  • Wikipedia: Authorship and ownership in copyright law in Canada)

Author’s Rights

  • Authors’ rights are a part of copyright law, and the French droit d’auteur is generally used in relation to the copyright laws of civil law including European Union Law.
  • Internationally, The Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works. protects authors’ rights. “Author” is used in a very wide sense, but in general, the author is the person whose creativity led to the protected work being created, although the exact definition varies from country to country.
    (Reference: Wikipedia: Author’s Rights.)

Copyright Law: Distinctions between Canada and the U. S.

  • Canada refers to “freelancers”, whereas, in the United States, the term “work made for hire” is used.
  • In both Canada and U.S., copyright protects original works, fixed in any tangible medium of expression. A work is considered original if independently created versus copied from other works; and if it possesses at least a minimal degree of creativity.
  • In both Canada and U.S., copyright is secured automatically upon creation of the work (such as an index).
    • In Canada, registration is not a prerequisite to the taking of an infringement action.
    • In the U.S. the Copyright Act establishes a mandatory filing requirement for works published in the U.S.; and the certificate of registration constitute prima facie evidence of the validity of the copyright.
  •  A “compilation” is a work formed by the collection and assembling of pre-existing materials, or of data, that are selected, coordinated, or arranged in such a way that the resulting work as a whole constitutes an original work of authorship. An index may be viewed as a “compilation”.
    • In Canada, the recent decision of the Federal Court of Appeal in Tele-Direct (Publications) Inc. v. American Business Information Inc. (1998) 2 C.F. 22, brought the Canadian position in line with position traditionally adopted by the U.S. case law on the subject.
    • In the U.S., copyright in a compilation or derivative work extends only to material contributed by the author of such work. According to the decision rendered in Feist Publications, Inc. v. Rural Tel. Services Co. 499 US 340 (1991), copyright protection afforded to compilations is relatively narrow and limited to the original characteristics of the compilation such as selection and organization.
  • Moral Rights
    • In Canada, all works are protected under the moral rights doctrine. The author may waive his moral right in whole or in part.
    • In the U.S., the moral rights protection offered is very limited because it only applies to visual art.

      (Reference: “A Summary of Some Distinctions Between Canadian and American Copyright Law and Practice” by  Bob H. Sotiriadis, Leger Robic Richard,  Lawyers, 1998)

U.S Copyright of Indexes

  • The U.S. Copyright Act of 1976 clearly states that a work is a “work made for hire” only “if the parties expressly agree in a written instrument signed by them, that the work shall be considered a “work made for hire”: before the work begins.
  • Without a signed written agreement by both parties, an index cannot be considered a “work made for hire”.
  • If both parties sign an agreement stating that the index will be a “work for hire”, then the commissioning agent, usually the publisher or author, will be the copyright holder.
  • Many people within the publishing community assume that an index is automatically considered to be a “work made for hire”.
  • Many indexers prefer to use an “assignment of rights” clause, rather than a “work for hire” clause. The indexer will assign all rights to the client upon full payment for the indexing work.
    (Reference: Indexing Books by Nancy Mulvany)
  • The following are some examples of court cases affirming copyright ownership that would be applicable to the indexes:
    • 1991: Feist Publications, Inc. v. Rural Telephone Service Co., Inc. (USSC: No. 89-1909).
    • 1989: Community for Creative Non-Violence (CCNV) v. Reid (USSC: No. 88-293).
    • 1977: New York Times v. Rosbury Date Interface, Inc. (424 F. Supp. (D. N. J. 1977)).
    • 1903: Kipling v. G.P. Putnam Sons (120 F. 631, 635 (2d Cir. 1903)).

For detailed discussions of US Copyright of Indexes

  • Copyright for Indexes, Revisited by Nancy Mulvany (1991) 
  • Works Made for Hire, U.S. Copyright Office 2012 

Credit Indexer For The Index

  • Indexes are creative, authored works and deserve to be recognized.
  • The indexer, just like a painter or photographer, is retained by a client to produce an original work of art. Please refer to Copyright to Book Indexes.
  • Publishers usually give credit to book designers, illustrators, proofreaders, as well as indexers on the copyright page at the front of the book. A typical credit would be: “Indexing by Clive Pyne, Book Indexing Services”. Some times, my website URL is also provided.
  • Alternately, credit for the index can be put on the first page of the index.
  • Why do I ask for a credit? For a small business-person, this credit helps the indexer market his/her services to generate new business, to stay in business. It is not easy being a small business person, but your credit can make a difference.
  • I am sure the you like to be appreciated for the work you do! So please show your appreciation and give credit to the indexer of your book