(a) Eligibility. A claimant or counterclaimant alleging infringement of an exclusive right in a copyrighted work before the Copyright Claims Board is eligible to expedite a copyright registration application under this section. This process shall be known as small claims expedited registration.
(b) Initiating small claims expedited registration. The small claims expedited registration process can only be initiated after the claimant or counterclaimant has completed an application for copyright registration and either the Copyright Claims Board has issued an order holding the proceedings in abeyance pursuant to § 221.1(b) and has granted the applicant permission to request an expedited registration or the proceeding has become active. To initiate the small claims expedited registration process, the qualifying claimant or counterclaimant must make a request and pay the required fee set forth in § 201.3(d). Parties must not attempt to initiate small claims expedited registration by using the Copyright Office's electronic registration system (eCO).
(c) Fee -
(1) Amount. The small claims expedited registration fee for each request must be made for the appropriate amount, as prescribed in § 201.3(c). The fee for small claims expedited registration is intended to accelerate the registration process for a qualifying Copyright Claims Board claimant or counterclaimant that already has a pending registration application; it is in addition to, and does not offset, the fee for copyright registration.
(2) Method of payment.
(i) The fee for small claims expedited registration must be submitted electronically to the Copyright Claims Board and not through the Copyright Office's electronic registration system (eCO).
(ii) A claimant or counterclaimant shall follow instructions on the Copyright Office website to make electronic payments by Pay.gov. Applicants may not use a deposit account to make payments for small claims expedited registration.
(3) No refunds. The small claims expedited registration fee is not refundable, unless the small claims expedited registration request is denied under paragraph (d) of this section.
(d) Denied requests. If the applicant failed to pay the required fee or if the Copyright Office determines that expedited registration under this section would be unduly burdensome based on the Office's workload or budget at the time the request is made, the Office will notify the applicant that the request has been denied and that the copyright registration claim will be examined on a regular basis.
(e) Granted requests. If the request for expedited registration under this section is granted, the Office will make every attempt to examine the application within 10 business days after notice of the request is delivered by the Copyright Claims Board to the Copyright Office's Office of Registration Policy and Practice, although the Copyright Office cannot guarantee that all applications will be examined within that timeframe.
(f) Identical registration standards. The Copyright Office will apply the same practices and procedures when examining a copyright registration claim, regardless of whether the applicant asks for small claims expedited registration.