Legal Guide for Bloggers: Make Sure Your Blog Is Legal

Do you want to learn about privacy policy, copyright infringement, fair use, disclaimers, blogger insurance, and taxes in blogging? In this legal guide for bloggers, you’ll learn how to make sure your blog is legal!

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Legal Disclaimer: The following advice comes from my 6+ years of experience as a blogger and my nearly 5 years of paying all my bills and financing my best lifestyle as a full-time blogger. I’m not a lawyer, though. And, particularly, I’m not your lawyer (not trying to be rude, it’s just that each case tends to have its own particular needs). So don’t take this legal guide for bloggers as a piece of professional legal advice. 

I have a lawyer who has been helping me throughout my career as a blogger and, through what I have learned from her, I intend to help beginner bloggers to start their blogs on the right path to blog legally and add all the legal pages required by law to their blogs and websites.

For verified legal advice when making sure that your blog is legal, please check

In this legal guide for bloggers, learn about privacy policy, copyright infringement, fair use, disclaimers, blogger insurance and taxes in blogging. And learn how to make sure your blog is legal!

To avoid legal complications as a blogger, make sure your blog is up to date with the law. Check out the checklist below to be sure your blog ticks all the boxes!

Legal Guide for Bloggers – Checklist to make sure you’re blogging legally:

#1 Be within the requirements of institutions that regulate blogging practices, such as FTC, CASL, and PERC

The FTC protects the consumer from dishonest practices and questionable business. The CASL exists to regulate digital marketing practices and protect consumer rights. And finally, The PECR sits alongside the Data Protection Act and the UK GDPR, which give people specific privacy rights concerning electronic communications.

This address could be your home address since most bloggers operate their blogging business from home. However, this puts your privacy as a blogger at risk. Sharing your home address with strangers is never a good idea. That’s why acquiring a Virtual Mail Address for your business is the safest way, in addition to being legal.

The CAN-SPAM Act is responsible for this requirement. Each email you send that violates this requirement can cost you up to $43,792 in penalties.

Related: Virtual Address and PO Box: crucial differences that remote workers need to know

Users of your blog have a legally protected right to know that you receive commissions for products and services you recommend within your blog.

Without an Affiliate Disclaimer, Affiliate Networks and Affiliate Programs will not accept your blog as a partner.

Related: 7 Best Hacks to Always Get Accepted by Affiliate Networks

This information should be available in your blog’s Privacy Policy and Terms & Conditions. In addition, you must add a pop-up that appears every time someone visits your site to inform the visitor that they have the right to consent to the use of cookies or not.

Organizations such as the FTC exist to protect the rights of consumers. To make sure your blog is legal, your site’s Privacy Policy must be legal and appropriate for your particular case. That’s why I recommend you to check – it’s a legal service that generates personalized legal documents for bloggers and website owners quickly at an affordable price. Check here!

Sometimes in blog posts, we advise from experience, but in areas where we don’t have professional qualifications. As an example, I wrote this legal guide for bloggers based on my 6+ years of experience as a blogger, using the guidance my lawyer gives me. However, I have no training in any area of law.

So I added a disclaimer at the top of this legal guide for bloggers. In this disclaimer, I inform you that I am not a lawyer and that seeking professional guidance is always the most effective option.

#6 Avoid Copyright Infringement

In other words, never use intellectual properties you do not own or are not allowed to use. This includes:

  • Repost articles from other bloggers without their permission
  • Using photos and videos from other content creators without their permission
  • The usage of intellectual property that falls outside of Fair Use

As bloggers, it’s usual to repost snippets of blog posts or graphics created by other bloggers to emphasize or illustrate information from your own articles. However, never fail to provide the source and a backlink!

Bloggers are self-employed workers. So you have to be responsible for paying all taxes related to the salary you make with your blog.

For example, when you apply for an Affiliate Program, it is usually required that you sign a digital form to be responsible for paying your taxes.

Legal Guide for Bloggers — The Business Side of Blogging

Do I Need to Register My Blog as a Business?

Not all bloggers register their blogs as businesses, especially those that don’t sell physical items.

If you only monetize your blog through affiliate sales, sponsored posts, and ads, you are not required to register your blog. Although it may be convenient for you to turn your blog into an LLC once you start making a considerable amount of money from it.

However, if you intend to sell goods or services online, you may need a Sale Tax permit, depending on where you operate your business.

Do You Need an LLC to Start a Blog?

No, you do not need to register an LLC to start a blog. Especially when you are not yet monetizing your blog.

However, once your blog becomes a source of income, turning it into an LLC can be the simplest and safest way to pay your fees.

Also, as a self-employed person, you may have to pay higher taxes depending on where you reside unless you’re a business owner. So that’s one more reason to consider turning your blog into an LLC.

But before making any decision, consult an appropriate attorney in your region.

Do Bloggers Pay Taxes?

Yes, blogging is a business, therefore bloggers pay taxes for the various sources of income they have.

Some bloggers even register their blogs as LLCs to facilitate the payment of taxes.

Do Bloggers Need Insurance?

Exposing your content online comes with some risks. It’s no different for bloggers. If someone claims that your guidance was misleading or caused them damage, owning blogger insurance can save you a lot of headaches.

Disclaimers are statements you place on your website to lessen your chances of liability.

Here are disclaimers frequently used by bloggers:

  • A disclaimer that states that you own your content.
  • A disclaimer that declares if you allow the reposting of your content (and under what circumstances) or not.
  • The Affiliate Disclaimer that your blog contains affiliate links that can earn you a commission.
  • A Fair Use disclaimer stating you are protected under Section 107 of the Copyright Act to use someone else’s copyrighted content.
  • A business disclaimer exempting you from liability in case your business advice does not work or causes any harm to your users.

Depending on your niche, you may also need other disclaimers, such as medical or health disclaimers.

Legal Guide for Bloggers — What Is Fair Use

As a blogger, fair use allows you limited usage of copyrighted material without the expressed permission from the owner.

This limited use includes commentary, criticism, parody, teaching, and more.

Fair use is a legal doctrine that promotes freedom of expression by permitting the unlicensed use of copyright-protected works in certain circumstances. Section 107 of the Copyright Act provides the statutory framework for determining whether something is a fair use and identifies certain types of uses—such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research—as examples of activities that may qualify as fair use.

(You can find more information about fair use at

However, whenever using third-party copyright ownership, make sure that this reproduction of copyrighted content falls within fair use to avoid lawsuits.

Legal Guide for Bloggers — Copyright FAQ

Copyright protection operates automatically. In other words, from the moment you post a blog post, you own it legally.

However, to legally sue someone infringing your copyright, you need to register each of your blog posts with the appropriate government agency where you reside.

If you live in the U.S., you can register many of your published blog posts in a single application through the U.S. Copyright Registration Portal.

For that, you just need to submit an application with your blog posts and pay online. The cost varies from $35 to $55.

Is It Illegal to Copy Blogs?

You cannot copy third-party blog posts and paste them into your own blog or website. Once a blogger posts a blog post, it legally belongs to them.

Copying a blog post may easily get you sued.

If you want to publish a blog post authored by someone else, you must have their permission. This permission is usually granted when you hire freelance writers and pay them to write blog posts for your blog.

Can I Use Screenshots on My Blog?

Screenshots usually fall under Fair Use. That is, if you need to use screenshots to illustrate or prove a point in one of your blog posts, you will probably be fine.

Can I Use Other People’s Photos on My Blog?

It depends on the situation. For example, using movies and TV show posters, celebrity images, or influencer posts may fall under Fair Use. Also, you should always cite the source of the images you use.

However, some bloggers and influencers explicitly state that they forbid the use of their photos. Breaking this requirement may get you sued.

Did you know that even celebrities sometimes get sued for posting pictures of themselves?!

Therefore, it is always best to use your own photos or photos you have permission to use.

Can I Post Someone Else’s Article on My Website?

You may not repost full articles authored by someone else on your blog without their permission. For that, you need to buy the content. 

Buying blog content is a common practice in reality. Many bloggers hire freelance writers to create content for their blogs.

On the other hand, when you need a short snippet from someone else’s blog post to illustrate or prove a point in your article, you should always cite the source and provide a backlink to the original article.

Can You Repost Blog Content?

You can always repost your own content on your blog. But beware! It doesn’t mean reposting your blog posts to trick search engines, which will not work anyway. Actually, it will create keyword cannibalism on your blog and kill your SEO.

If you have content you can reuse, the best option is to use pieces of content, such as graphics and snippets, in new blog posts.

Another option is to edit and update old articles to keep them relevant and competitive today.

Now, if you intend to reuse content that does not belong to you, you must not do so unless the use is considered Fair Use. Or if you have the creator’s explicit permission.

Legal Guide for Bloggers — Avoiding Getting Sued

Can I Get Sued for Writing a Blog?

Copyright infringement, defamation, and statements considered hate speech are reasons you may get sued for writing a blog post.

To avoid lawsuits, be mindful of the type of content you post on your blog. Also, always be alert to avoid copyright infringement, even if accidental.

It is also worth remembering that when choosing a niche blog for your blog, it is wise to avoid niches that deal with controversial subjects and “hot topics”.

How Do Bloggers Not Get Sued?

To avoid getting sued as a blogger, never use articles, images, and videos for which you do not have permission.

Use your own images or even use free photo stocks such as Unsplash.

Also, always provide the source and backlink of graphics and excerpts from other blog posts that you use in your blog posts.

And finally, make sure that mentions of third-party intellectual properties are found within Fair Use.

Legal Guide for Bloggers — What Are The Dos and Don’ts of Blogging?

The DOs of blogging:

The DON’Ts of blogging:

  • Do not use third-party content without permission
  • Never use affiliate links in your blog posts without informing your readers
  • Do not start blogging without defining a niche
  • Never advise outside of your professional field without disclaimers
  • Do not get involved in misleading practices
  • Never forget to pay your taxes

How Much Does a Blog Cost per Month?

Keeping a professional blog is not expensive at first. Professional Web Hosting for a blog usually costs $3 or less per month. Or even as low as $35.40 in a year.

Also, if your CMS is, you will need a well-coded WordPress Theme. Fortunately, you can buy one for a one-time fee of $29.99 and receive lifetime updates without paying anything extra

As your blog grows, you will likely want to invest in extra professional tools. That is, the monthly costs of maintaining a blog will be higher. However, at this point, you’ll be monetizing your blog already. So you can take the costs out of your blog salary.

While there are free blogging platforms, they are only recommended for those who blog as a hobby — not for money.

If you want to start a profitable blog but have no previous experience blogging and no coding skills, check out this step-by-step guide to easily get started today!

Legal Guide for Bloggers — Final Thoughts

I hope this legal guide for bloggers has helped to clear up some common doubts that many bloggers, including you, often have about the legal and bureaucratic side of being a blogger.

Remember to check out to generate various custom legal documents for your blog, website, or eCommerce for an affordable price. When it comes to keeping up with the law, having professional guidance is always the safest way!

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Published on August 21, 2022. Last updated on December 8, 2023.

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