Copyright belongs to the creator the moment an image is made. If you are an employee, your employer is considered the creator while you are working. If you are self-employed, you own your images unless you sign a contract giving away the rights (see contract section). Your ability to license and relicense your pictures is critical to making a living and rooted in the U.S. Constitution’s copyright provisions.
The Fine Print: Copyright (video webinar)
Is it a work made for hire? (PDF, 89 KB)
US copyright information from the United States Library of Congress
Canadian copyright information from The Canadian Association of Photographers and Illustrators in Communications (CAPIC)
Editorial Photographers (EP) Copyright Resource Page
Copyright Office Electronic Registration - new service at lower cost