Deferred Registration Examination Study

At the request of Senate Judiciary Intellectual Property Subcommittee Ranking Member Thom Tillis, the Copyright Office undertook a public study of the feasibility, benefits, and costs of creating a new option for copyright registration where examination of a claim may be deferred until requested by the applicant. After consideration of the comments submitted and the interests of all stakeholders, as well as the policy objectives and practical operation of the current registration system, the Office did not recommend moving forward with a deferred examination option.

The Office acknowledged the challenges that proponents of deferred examination reported with the current registration system. It concluded, however, that a deferred examination option would not provide the hoped-for resolution. Rather, the Office found that offering such an option could lead to a costlier and less efficient system while also creating new issues, including with regard to the reliability of the public record.

At the same time, in recognition of the concerns identified, the Office expressed its commitment to continuing work to identify and implement additional measures to ensure that the copyright registration system is meeting the needs of all.