Copyright Compendium

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Chapter 2400

2407.1 (A) Who May View, Inspect, or Obtain Copies of the U.S. Copyright Office’s Registration Records?

 

2407.1 (A) Who May View, Inspect, or Obtain Copies of the U.S. Copyright Office’s Registration Records?

 

Online Records: Any member of the public may view or make copies of the registration records that are made available through the U.S. Copyright Office’s website.

 

Records in the Public Records Reading Room: Certain registration records may be viewed or copied by any member of the public who presents a reader registration card, including the records located in the Public Records Reading Room.

 

Pending Applications: As a general rule, records relating to pending applications may be inspected or copied only by the claimant named in a pending application or the claimant’s duly authorized agents. The specific types of records that may be inspected or copied and the specific parties who may inspect or obtain copies of those records are discussed in Section 2407.1 (B) (3) below.

 

Deposit Copy(ies): The deposit copy(ies) for a work that has been registered or refused by the Office may be inspected by any member of the public who presents a reader registration card. By contrast, the claimant named in the application and his or her duly authorized agent are generally the only parties who may inspect the deposit copy(ies) for a pending application.

 

Any of the parties listed below may request a certified or uncertified copy of the deposit copy(ies) or identifying material for a copyright claim, provided that the party satisfies the conditions set forth in Section 2407.1 (D) (2):

 

• The claimant of record for the copyright.

 

• A designated agent for the claimant of record.

 

• The owner of any of the exclusive rights in the copyright (including an heir of a deceased author or copyright owner), provided that the ownership can be demonstrated by written documentation of the transfer of ownership.

 

• An attorney representing the plaintiff or the defendant in actual or prospective litigation involving the copyrighted work.

 

• A court issuing an order for the reproduction of the deposit for a registered work that is to be submitted as evidence in a case involving that work.

 

The specific procedures for requesting an inspection or copies of the Office’s public records are discussed in Sections 2407.1 (C) and 2407.1 (D) below.