Reconsideration Procedure for Refusals To Register: Revised Deadlines, 62373 [2016-21671]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 175 / Friday, September 9, 2016 / Rules and Regulations LIBRARY OF CONGRESS U.S. Copyright Office 37 CFR Part 202 [Docket No. 2016–6] Reconsideration Procedure for Refusals To Register: Revised Deadlines U.S. Copyright Office, Library of Congress. ACTION: Final rule. AGENCY: The U.S. Copyright Office is altering the deadline for submitting requests to reconsider refusals to register a copyright claim. Previously, a reconsideration request had to be received by the Office, via mail, no later than three months after the Office issued its decision to refuse registration. This rule has led to confusion, as it can be difficult to predict when a request will physically be received by the Office, particularly given securityscreening-related delays in the processing of mail. Accordingly, to provide greater certainty to applicants, the amended rule provides that reconsideration requests only need to be postmarked or dispatched no later than three months after a refusal is issued. DATES: Effective September 9, 2016. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Regan A. Smith, Associate General Counsel, resm@loc.gov; John R. Riley, Attorney-Advisor, jril@loc.gov. Each person can be reached by telephone at 202–707–8040. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Congress tasked the Register of Copyrights with the responsibility to assess the validity of copyright claims submitted for registration. 17 U.S.C. 408(a); 410(b). While the Office registers the majority of copyright claims, in some cases the applications do not meet statutory or regulatory requirements and, after examination, the Office refuses to register the claimed works. If an applicant disagrees with the Office’s determination, he or she may appeal the decision within the Office. This administrative procedure is known as a ‘‘request for reconsideration.’’ A first request for reconsideration is reviewed within the Registration Program. See 37 CFR 202.5(b)(1)–(3). If the Registration Program again refuses to register the work, it will send the applicant a written notification stating the reasons for refusal. 37 CFR 202.5(b)(4). An applicant can appeal that refusal via a second request for reconsideration to the Copyright Office Review Board. See 37 CFR 202.5(c)(1)–(3). ehiers on DSK5VPTVN1PROD with RULES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 15:26 Sep 08, 2016 Jkt 238001 The current regulation requires both first and second requests for reconsideration to be mailed to the Copyright Office. 37 CFR 202.5(d).1 Prior to the amendment made here, both first and second requests for reconsideration would be considered untimely if they were received by the Copyright Office more than three months after the date of the preceding refusal to register. See 37 CFR 202.5(b)(3), (c)(3). This regulation permits the Register of Copyrights to suspend or waive, in whole or in part, the time requirements for submitting a request for reconsideration, though only upon a showing of good cause. 37 CFR 202.5(e). The Office recognizes that applicants requesting reconsideration of a refusal to register a copyright claim may benefit from a rule that requires an appeal to be postmarked within the prescribed time period, rather than a deadline based upon when the appeal is received by the Office. In particular, the Office understands that it can be difficult to predict how long it will take for a reconsideration request to actually be received by the Office, particularly given security screening related delays. Accordingly, the Office has decided to adopt a ‘‘mailbox’’ or ‘‘postal’’ rule for requests for reconsideration delivered by the United States Postal Service or dispatched by a commercial carrier, courier, or messenger, which will offer applicants greater certainty while continuing to ensure that appeals are considered in a timely fashion. This rule will apply to any appeals that are postmarked or dispatched after the rule’s effective date; for appeals postmarked or dispatched prior to that date, the previous regulation will apply. The Copyright Office is publishing this amendment as a final rule without first publishing a notice of proposed rulemaking, as it constitutes a change to a ‘‘rule[ ] of agency . . . procedure, or practice.’’ 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(A). The rule does not ‘‘alter the rights or interests of parties,’’ but merely ‘‘alter[s] the manner in which the parties present themselves or their viewpoints to the agency.’’ JEM Broad. Co. v. F.C.C., 22 F.3d 320, 326 (D.C. Cir. 1994). Other provisions that relate to submissions of reconsideration requests remain unaffected. List of Subjects in 37 CFR Part 202 Copyright, Legal process. 1 The Office at this time is not allowing for electronic submission of requests for reconsideration, although it will consider implementing such a procedure as part of future information technology modernization efforts. PO 00000 Frm 00021 Fmt 4700 Sfmt 4700 62373 Final Regulations For the reasons set forth in the preamble, the Copyright Office amends 37 CFR part 202 as follows: PART 202—PREREGISTRATION AND REGISTRATION OF CLAIMS TO COPYRIGHT 1. The authority citation for part 202 continues to read as follows: ■ Authority: 17 U.S.C. 408(f), 702. 2. Amend § 202.5 as follows: a. In paragraph (b)(3), remove the phrase ‘‘received by the Copyright Office’’ and add in its place the phrase ‘‘postmarked or dispatched by a commercial carrier, courier, or messenger’’. ■ b. In paragraph (c)(3), remove the phrase ‘‘received in the Copyright Office’’ and add in its place the phrase ‘‘postmarked or dispatched by a commercial carrier, courier, or messenger’’. ■ ■ Dated: September 2, 2016. Maria A. Pallante, Register of Copyrights and Director of the U.S. Copyright Office. Approved by: David S. Mao, Acting Librarian of Congress. [FR Doc. 2016–21671 Filed 9–8–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 1410–30–P ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA–R07–OAR–2016–0313; FRL–9951–87– Region 7] Approval and Promulgation of Implementation Plans; State of Kansas; Infrastructure SIP Requirements for the 2012 Annual Fine Particulate Matter (PM2.5) National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). ACTION: Final rule. AGENCY: The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is approving elements of a State Implementation Plan (SIP) submission from the State of Kansas addressing the applicable requirements of Clean Air Act (CAA) section 110 for the 2012 annual PM2.5 NAAQS. Section 110 requires that each state adopt and submit a SIP to support the implementation, maintenance, and enforcement of each new or revised NAAQS promulgated by the EPA. These SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\09SER1.SGM 09SER1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 175 (Friday, September 9, 2016)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Page 62373]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-21671]



[[Page 62373]]

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LIBRARY OF CONGRESS

U.S. Copyright Office

37 CFR Part 202

[Docket No. 2016-6]


Reconsideration Procedure for Refusals To Register: Revised 
Deadlines

AGENCY: U.S. Copyright Office, Library of Congress.

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: The U.S. Copyright Office is altering the deadline for 
submitting requests to reconsider refusals to register a copyright 
claim. Previously, a reconsideration request had to be received by the 
Office, via mail, no later than three months after the Office issued 
its decision to refuse registration. This rule has led to confusion, as 
it can be difficult to predict when a request will physically be 
received by the Office, particularly given security-screening-related 
delays in the processing of mail. Accordingly, to provide greater 
certainty to applicants, the amended rule provides that reconsideration 
requests only need to be postmarked or dispatched no later than three 
months after a refusal is issued.

DATES: Effective September 9, 2016.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Regan A. Smith, Associate General 
Counsel, resm@loc.gov; John R. Riley, Attorney-Advisor, jril@loc.gov. 
Each person can be reached by telephone at 202-707-8040.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Congress tasked the Register of Copyrights 
with the responsibility to assess the validity of copyright claims 
submitted for registration. 17 U.S.C. 408(a); 410(b). While the Office 
registers the majority of copyright claims, in some cases the 
applications do not meet statutory or regulatory requirements and, 
after examination, the Office refuses to register the claimed works. If 
an applicant disagrees with the Office's determination, he or she may 
appeal the decision within the Office. This administrative procedure is 
known as a ``request for reconsideration.'' A first request for 
reconsideration is reviewed within the Registration Program. See 37 CFR 
202.5(b)(1)-(3). If the Registration Program again refuses to register 
the work, it will send the applicant a written notification stating the 
reasons for refusal. 37 CFR 202.5(b)(4). An applicant can appeal that 
refusal via a second request for reconsideration to the Copyright 
Office Review Board. See 37 CFR 202.5(c)(1)-(3).
    The current regulation requires both first and second requests for 
reconsideration to be mailed to the Copyright Office. 37 CFR 
202.5(d).\1\ Prior to the amendment made here, both first and second 
requests for reconsideration would be considered untimely if they were 
received by the Copyright Office more than three months after the date 
of the preceding refusal to register. See 37 CFR 202.5(b)(3), (c)(3). 
This regulation permits the Register of Copyrights to suspend or waive, 
in whole or in part, the time requirements for submitting a request for 
reconsideration, though only upon a showing of good cause. 37 CFR 
202.5(e).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ The Office at this time is not allowing for electronic 
submission of requests for reconsideration, although it will 
consider implementing such a procedure as part of future information 
technology modernization efforts.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The Office recognizes that applicants requesting reconsideration of 
a refusal to register a copyright claim may benefit from a rule that 
requires an appeal to be postmarked within the prescribed time period, 
rather than a deadline based upon when the appeal is received by the 
Office. In particular, the Office understands that it can be difficult 
to predict how long it will take for a reconsideration request to 
actually be received by the Office, particularly given security 
screening related delays. Accordingly, the Office has decided to adopt 
a ``mailbox'' or ``postal'' rule for requests for reconsideration 
delivered by the United States Postal Service or dispatched by a 
commercial carrier, courier, or messenger, which will offer applicants 
greater certainty while continuing to ensure that appeals are 
considered in a timely fashion. This rule will apply to any appeals 
that are postmarked or dispatched after the rule's effective date; for 
appeals postmarked or dispatched prior to that date, the previous 
regulation will apply.
    The Copyright Office is publishing this amendment as a final rule 
without first publishing a notice of proposed rulemaking, as it 
constitutes a change to a ``rule[ ] of agency . . . procedure, or 
practice.'' 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(A). The rule does not ``alter the rights or 
interests of parties,'' but merely ``alter[s] the manner in which the 
parties present themselves or their viewpoints to the agency.'' JEM 
Broad. Co. v. F.C.C., 22 F.3d 320, 326 (D.C. Cir. 1994). Other 
provisions that relate to submissions of reconsideration requests 
remain unaffected.

List of Subjects in 37 CFR Part 202

    Copyright, Legal process.

Final Regulations

    For the reasons set forth in the preamble, the Copyright Office 
amends 37 CFR part 202 as follows:

PART 202--PREREGISTRATION AND REGISTRATION OF CLAIMS TO COPYRIGHT

0
1. The authority citation for part 202 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  17 U.S.C. 408(f), 702.


0
2. Amend Sec.  202.5 as follows:
0
a. In paragraph (b)(3), remove the phrase ``received by the Copyright 
Office'' and add in its place the phrase ``postmarked or dispatched by 
a commercial carrier, courier, or messenger''.
0
b. In paragraph (c)(3), remove the phrase ``received in the Copyright 
Office'' and add in its place the phrase ``postmarked or dispatched by 
a commercial carrier, courier, or messenger''.

    Dated: September 2, 2016.
Maria A. Pallante,
Register of Copyrights and Director of the U.S. Copyright Office.
    Approved by:
David S. Mao,
Acting Librarian of Congress.
[FR Doc. 2016-21671 Filed 9-8-16; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 1410-30-P