The United States Copyright Office and all Library of Congress Buildings remain closed to in-person visits due to the Coronavirus outbreak. When possible, employees of the Copyright Office are working remotely, while the number of onsite workers needed to process claims is being limited at this time for social distancing and safety reasons.
The good news is that the majority of copyright services that individuals and business owners must access to register and renew their creative works are already handled on an electronic basis and continue to happen with minimal interruptions. But, the Copyright Office is aware that these temporary closures are limiting the public’s ability to access services. In order to deal with the resulting backlogs and help expedite outstanding claims, the Office has expanded its ability to receive electronic submissions for most services.
A comprehensive chart that lists out all of the new emergency electronic submission services can be found on the Copyright Office’s website here.
It’s important to note that if there is only an email address listed on the submission chart for a specific filing, the individual or business owner is to email what is required and wait for a response with additional instructions on how to submit payment for the service. The Office further notes that attachments submitted by email are limited to a file size of 10MB.
As of this writing, all extensions or exemptions because of COVID-19 will be in effect until July 10th or “unless the Acting Register issues an announcement stating that the period of disruption has ended before that time, or alternatively, that a further extension is necessary.”
Our law firm is continuing to monitor this evolving situation as it remains unclear when states will be able to collectively relax their “stay at home” orders, which limits the public’s ability to fully participate in the Copyright System.
If you are unsure if you qualify for an exemption or you feel your situation falls into a gray area and you’d like further guidance, please feel free to contact our copyright attorneys at 888-666-0062 to schedule an appointment.
DISCLAIMER: The information contained in this article is for informational purposes only and is not legal advice or a substitute for obtaining legal advice from an attorney.