Copyright Report on Small Claims Recommends Voluntary Copyright Claims Board, $30,000 Damages Cap, Remote Hearings

03/01/2013

On the eve of closing its offices due to the federal government shutdown, the U.S. Copyright Office (the Office) released its long-awaited report on Copyright Small Claims. The report recommends a voluntary tribunal, called the Copyright Claims Board, which would hear all types of copyright infringement cases and permit all defenses to be raised. The report recommended a ceiling for claims within the tribunal at $30,000, which is the current upper limit of statutory damages for non-willful infringement. Limited statutory damages awards would be allowed under the proposed system. All types of copyrighted works would be eligible for the system and litigants could still opt to bring their claims to federal court as they do now.

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