U.S. Copyright Office Issues a Final Rule Related to “Smaller Claims” Proceedings before the Copyright Claims Board

Issue No. 1030 - January 16, 2024

The Copyright Office is adopting a final rule amending the procedures for “smaller claims” proceedings before the Copyright Claims Board. In response to public comments, this final rule modifies a rule published on May 17, 2022.

The final rule sets forth regulations governing smaller claims, which are claims seeking damages of $5,000 or less. Relative to standard CCB proceedings, smaller claims involve more limited discovery, optional written submissions, and informal conferences that call for discussion of the evidence and issues presented. The amendments clarify that, before service of the initial notice, a claimant may elect to change from a smaller claims proceeding to a standard CCB proceeding or vice versa. The amendments also address the process for resolving potential conflicts between a claimant who selects the smaller claims process, and a respondent seeking to use the standard proceeding. Finally, the amendments clarify the rules governing submission of evidence, including actions the presiding Copyright Claims Officer can take if a party violates these rules.

Additional information is available on the rulemaking's webpage.