Quote Originally Posted by marciofs View Post
If you have the negatives how can someone else have the copyright without a document proving that the work is orphan or that the copyright was transferred to them?
They are not "proving" they have the copyright. If a work is in the public domain you can use it without paying royalties. It is up to you to "prove" you have the copyright. None of us is lawyers, but from a reading of the U.S. copyright website you need to register your copyright before mounting a legal action. You may own the copyright but our novice interpretation of the U.S. copyright website leads us to believe without registration you cannot bring a successful legal action.