Copyright Office Issues Final Rule for Active Proceedings and Post-Determination Procedures

Issue No. 963 - May 17, 2022

Pursuant to the Copyright Alternative in Small-Claims Enforcement (CASE) Act of 2020 and after soliciting public comments, the U.S. Copyright Office has published a final rule establishing active proceedings and post-determination procedures before the Copyright Claims Board (CCB).

The rule provides procedures and requirements for active proceedings and post-determination procedures, including the following topics:

  • party management, such as voluntary dismissal, joining additional parties to a proceeding, default, failure to prosecute, and parties’ conduct;
  • managing proceedings, including limiting the number of cases a party can bring, scheduling orders, settlement conferences, amending pleadings, claim consolidation, and records;
  • discovery and evidence, such as written testimony, interrogatories, production of documents, and discovery disputes and sanctions;
  • hearings and conferences; and
  • post-determination procedures for reconsideration and the Register’s review.

Finally, the Office is offering the public the opportunity to submit additional comments on the “smaller claims” final regulations so it can determine whether these regulations strike the proper balance between streamlining the smaller claims process and providing sufficient procedural protections to all parties. Comments on these regulations are due on November 14, 2022.

This final rule marks the completion of all regulations required for the CCB to begin operations. In the near future, the Office expects to announce that the CCB is available to start accepting claims. As the CCB begins operations, the Office will be monitoring how all of its regulations are functioning and will make any required adjustments. Parties may provide any feedback regarding the CCB’s regulations at any time via the Office’s ex parte meeting process. To provide feedback on other topics not involving regulations, the public can contact the CCB here.

Additional information on this rule is available here, and information on the CCB can be found here.