Copyright Recapture 2012: Strategies for Owners and Transferees Facing the New Termination Threat

Navigating Complex Statutory Provisions, Lessons Learned From Initial Lawsuits

Recording of a 90-minute premium CLE webinar with Q&A

Conducted on Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926
Course Materials

This CLE course will provide guidance to counsel for copyright owners and copyright transferees on the steps to recapture rights when a rights termination window opens under the 1976 Copyright Act. The panel will offer best practices for copyright owners and the transferees of those rights.


Since last year, original copyright owners or their heirs have the right to unilaterally terminate agreements transferring rights under the 1976 Copyright Act. This right cannot be waived regardless of the contractual agreement transferring the rights.

With original owners beginning to recapture copyrights, owners and transferees must evaluate their contracts. Copyright owners must understand termination timing and the procedural steps to effect such termination.

Copyright transferees should review their rights, determine the impact should the owner want to recapture the rights, and explore renegotiating the transfer-of-rights agreement.

Listen as our authoritative panel of IP attorneys examines the statutory provisions for termination under the Copyright Act, the procedural steps to execute such termination, and litigation trends. The panel will outline best practices for copyright owners and transferees.



  1. Statutory provisions for termination
    1. Section 304
    2. Section 203
    3. Differences between the two sections
    4. What works are subject to termination
    5. Sound recordings as a special category
      1. Why 1971 is important
      2. Why 2012 is important
  2. Nuts and bolts – how to deal with this at practical level
    1. Process of termination
    2. Alternatives to termination
    3. Leveraging agreements
    4. Timing
  3. Litigation trends
    1. Winnie-the-Pooh/Steinbeck/Lassie
    2. Superman
    3. Marvel cases
    4. Scorpio Music v. Willis (the Village People)


The panel will review these and other key questions:

  • Which parties can exercise the termination rights and what are the key factors in the timing of such termination?
  • What are the steps for copyright transferees to protect their rights in the work?
  • What can be learned from high profile cases, such as those dealing with the Winnie-the-Pooh and Lassie copyrights?

Following the speaker presentations, you'll have an opportunity to get answers to your specific questions during the interactive Q&A.


David A. Donahue
David A. Donahue

Fross Zelnick Lehrman & Zissu

He litigates all manner of copyright, trademark, unfair competition, right of publicity and related commercial matters....  |  Read More

Neil J. Rosini
Neil J. Rosini

Franklin Weinrib Rudell & Vassallo

Mr. Rosini focuses on content clearance for broadcast, publication and online distribution; opinion work and...  |  Read More

David M. Young
David M. Young

Goodwin Procter

He primarily focuses on intellectual property counseling, litigation and appellate practice, including patent...  |  Read More

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