Copyright Compendium

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208 Withdrawing an Application

208 Withdrawing an Application


An applicant may submit a request to withdraw a pending application at any time before the U.S. Copyright Office has issued a certificate of registration or has refused to register the claim. The request should be made in writing and it should explain why the applicant is seeking to withdraw the claim.


The request should be addressed to the “Associate Register of Copyrights and Director of Registration Policy & Practice.” The applicant may email the request to the registration specialist who has been assigned to the claim. Alternatively, the applicant may mail the request to the following address:


Associate Register of Copyrights and Director of Registration Policy & Practice

Registration Program

U.S. Copyright Office

101 Independence Avenue SE Washington, DC 20559


The Office will use its discretion to decide whether to approve or deny a timely withdrawal request. In making this decision, the Office will balance the interest of the applicant with the public interest in maintaining the integrity of the registration record. The Office does not routinely grant withdrawals, particularly where the request is made merely to avoid a refusal to register.


In the event that the Office approves a withdrawal request, the Office will not refund the filing fee and will not return the deposit copy(ies). The Office will not reinstate an application once it has been withdrawn. If the applicant wishes to resubmit the claim, the applicant must file a new application, new deposit copy(ies), and the correct filing fee. The effective date of registration for a new claim will be based on the date that the new submission is received by the Office.

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