If the U.S. Copyright Office discovers an error or omission in a registration record that was caused by its own action or mistake, the Office will correct the record on its own initiative. 37 C.F.R. § 202.6 (A). This procedure is known as a “referral.” If appropriate, the Office will issue a new certificate of registration containing the correct or missing information, update the online public record for the claim, and cancel any erroneous registrations that should not have been issued.
By contrast, if the applicant asks the Office to correct an error or omission that was caused by the applicant’s action or mistake, the Office will not correct the record through the referral procedure – ” even if the registration specialist should have recognized that error or omission when he or she examined the claim. Instead, the author, the claimant, or one of the other parties listed in Section 1802.1 must submit an application for a supplementary registration, or a new basic registration (if appropriate), together with the requisite filing fee. See Supplementary Registration, 81 Fed. Reg. 86,656, 86,660-61 (Dec. 1, 2016).
There is a limited exception to this rule. If a social security number, driver’s license number, credit card number, or bank account number appears in the certificate of registration or the online public record, the author, the claimant, or one of the other parties listed in Section 1802.1 should contact the Office using the form posted on the U.S. Copyright Office’s website, instead of filing an application for supplementary registration. The Office will remove a social security number, driver’s license number, credit card number, or bank account number from the certificate of registration and online public record upon written request. See 37 C.F.R. § 201.2 (F). Likewise, if the Office discovers this type of information entirely on its own, it will remove that information from the registration record without communicating with the applicant. See Removal of Personally Identifiable Information From Registration Records, 82 Fed. Reg. 9004, 9005 (Feb. 2, 2017).
For information concerning the procedure for removing and replacing other types of personally identifiable information that may appear in the online public record, see Section 1805.