March 09, 2020

The Art Newspaper Quotes Joshua Kaufman on a Proposed Copyright Alternative in Small Claims Court Act

1 min

On March 6, 2020, Joshua Kaufman was quoted in The Art Newspaper on the proposed Copyright Alternative in the Small Claims Enforcement (CASE) Act, which would set up a small claims court system in the U.S. Copyright Office.

According to the article, the court would have three judges adjudicating relatively minor instances of copyright infringement. The damages that could be awarded would be limited to $15,000 for each infringed work and a total of $30,000 per claim. These courts would function as mediation mechanisms, requiring the consent of both sides to proceed. Defendants would have the right to opt out of the proceedings within 60 days and resolve the matter in a federal courtroom instead.

Although the CASE Act passed the House of Representatives by an overwhelming majority, it has prompted some pushback. The measure "doesn't go far enough," according to Kaufman. "Most infringers know that if they opt out, the artist won't be able to pursue it in regular court" because of the cost of litigation, and "simply won’t agree to it."