Compendium of U.S. Copyright Practices, 3rd Edition

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605.2 (B) Cover Letters

605.2 (B) Cover Letters

An applicant may submit a cover letter with an application or with the deposit copy(ies). A cover letter may provide additional information that is relevant to the examination process, such as explaining apparent discrepancies in the application or justifying the applicant’s request for special handling or special relief

When filing an online application, the applicant may upload a cover letter as part of the deposit, provided that the letter and the deposit are submitted as separate files. To submit a cover letter with a paper application, the applicant may attach it to the application.

A cover letter will not be returned to the applicant or attached as an exhibit to the certificate of registration. However, the U.S. Copyright Office will retain a copy of the letter in the registration record. If the letter was uploaded to the electronic registration system, the letter will be marked as “correspondence.”

If the letter contains material information, the registration specialist may add that information to the registration record with an annotation, or may add a note to the certificate of registration and the online public record indicating that there is correspondence in the file. If there is a material variance between the information contained in the letter and elsewhere in the registration materials, the specialist may communicate with the applicant, which will delay the examination of the claim.

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