AIPLA Submits Comments on Notification of Inquiry Regarding Copyright Alternative in Small-Claims Enforcement (“CASE”) Act Regulations

Written April 26, 2021

On April 26, 2021, AIPLA submitted comments to the U.S. Copyright Office on Notification of Inquiry regarding Copyright Alternative in Small-Claims Enforcement (“CASE”) Act Regulations. As a general matter, AIPLA believes that it is important to keep the procedures as straight forward and accessible as possible to ensure this will be a new, simple, and low-cost process to resolve small copyright claims.

AIPLA encouraged the Copyright Claims Board (?? Spell out?) to publish standardized forms and instructions. A sample Initial Notice has been drafted and included, and it should be included in both paper and electronic form. Additionally, AIPLA is in favor of providing a Second Notice, with sufficient delivery through the U.S. Postal Service. For ease of delivery, AIPLA is in favor of a Designated Agent directory. It was also noted that online submission of opt-out notices should be encouraged, but a paper opt-out option is also recommended. Additionally, Libraries and Archives should be required to prove their qualification for section 108 and the blanket opt out, under penalty of perjury.

To strike an appropriate balance of discovery, AIPLA recommends meaningful oversight of the process through standardized, presumptive disclosure obligations, conferences with Copyright Claims Attorneys as appropriate, readily accessible and easy to follow educational materials and forms, limitations on discovery requests, templates, and mandatory disclosures. AIPLA recommends that the CCB require a standardized, initial disclosure of relevant information, with additional information requested only through a conference with a CCB Officer or Copyright Claims Attorney.

AIPLA recommends that standardized initial disclosures be made following an initial status conference with a CCB Officer or Copyright Claims Attorney. At either parties’ request or on CCB’s initiative, the CCB can set additional conferences to address any remaining discovery disputes, scheduling, or procedural issues. Additionally, AIPLA encourages the CCB to adopt a simple, standard, default protective order.

Regarding rules of evidence, AIPLA encourages the CCB to be flexible and permissive in allowing the introduction and consideration of evidence for whatever probative value it may have, irrespective of formalities. Finally, AIPLA urges the Office to stagger the initial fee and any subsequent fees. The initial filing fee should be kept at or near an amount proportionate to work done, suggested to be in the range of $35 to $55.

To read the full comments, please download the file.