Is intellectual right considered as property that can be protected by the Sharia?
Many countries now have legal mechanisms to protect intellectual rights (copyrights, patents, designs, trademarks) that were not previously recognised. Intellectual right is a modern legal concept that has not been addressed directly in the primary sources of Sharia. The question arises whether intellectual right considered as property (milk) and hence is protected by Sharia?
Muslim jurists are divided in this issue. Some have argued that intellectual right is alien to Islam, since it cannot be classified as a tangible asset. They also argue that knowledge, as per the teachings of Islam, should be accessible to each and every one and it is, therefore, not permitted for any individual or a group to have exclusive monopoly over it.
In contrast, we, and many other contemporary scholars, argue that the Quran and sunna do not restrict the definition of wealth and ownership to tangible assets. We do not believe that copyright laws restrict dissemination of knowledge or lead to its monopolisation, rather they protect it from being abused.
These laws concerning intellectual property protect individuals who work hard to produce knowledge and provide them with the necessary recognition and financial means to continue developing knowledge and prevent others from plagiarising or even benefiting financially from the efforts of others. The Qur’an categorically prohibits consuming the rights of others without any valid transaction (Quran 2:188) and also forbids from helping each other in sins and aggressions (Quran 5:2).
Therefore, stealing, copying, selling, and engaging in any act that infringes intellectual property rights of an individual are not allowed.
 al-Uthmānī, D. M. T., Buḥūth fī Qadhaya Fiqhīyyah Muʿasirah 1st ed. (Damascus: Dar al-Qalam 1998)
 For instance, Ayatullah Sistani does not recognise copyright laws from a sharia perspective. However, it should be noted that he encourages his followers to adhere to the law of land and hence does not allow to infringe copyright laws if they are protected by the land in which one resides. https://www.sistani.org/english/qa/01153/