Copyright project 1: registration (ARCHIVE OF FALL 2016)





A Pretend Limited Liability Partnership

From: Ira Steven Nathenson, “Managing Partner,” T3 PLLP
To: Fall 2016 “Associates”
Date: Sept. 19, 2016
Re: Copyright registration project

Note to public: this assignment is created for teaching purposes. This project uses real-world materials in order to provide a meaningful learning experience. However, no actual affiliation with any person or entity exists. 


You are fictional associates in a fictional law firm: Thomas, Thomas, and Thomas, PLLP, or “Pretend Limited Liability Partnership.”  (Also known as T-Cubed.)  There are no real clients and no real adverse parties. You will do work related to preparing a copyright registration form for filing with the United States Copyright Office.

Short description of project.

Each of you will bring in one physical work (either a book, magazine, CD, or DVD) that will be used for another member of the group.

Each of you will also serve as a lawyer for someone else’s work. By random ballot, the works will be assigned to other members of the group. Each lawyer will prepare a registration form, contracts, a memo, and other tasks related to registering the copyright.

Due date and time.

Your project must be handed in, in paper form, along with the work.

The project file is due Tuesday, Oct. 25 at 4PM EST. Tuesday, Oct. 11, at 4PM EST. Friday, Oct. 7, at 4PM EST. All materials must be printed out and organized, and must be turned in to either Mariela Torres or Diana Barroso (administrative assistants in the faculty suite, upstairs, second floor, near faculty offices). No electronic submissions will be accepted. I won’t be on campus due to my fracture, so please turn projects in to Ms. Torres or Barraso.

Initial task for Wed., Sept. 21:

For Wed., Sept. 21, you are acting as the client. Bring the work you want to register to class.

  • If you will not be in class, then give it to me personally before class, or drop it off with Mariela or Diana (faculty secretaries) or Suzie (receptionist) in the faculty suite area.
  • On Wed., Sept. 21, we will randomly assign lawyers for the works. I will transfer temporary possession of the work to your assigned lawyer, who will be responsible for the object until they submit it to me as part of their case file.
  • I will retain the objects until I return the scored files back to the lawyers.

A word of caution:

  • Clients: I recommend against providing any works that you would not want to lose (such as a treasured book or rare vinyl album).
  • Lawyers: Just as a lawyer is responsible for maintaining any property held on behalf of a client, so too are you responsible for maintaining and preserving any client property placed in your trust.

Your case file due Oct. 11: Oct. 7:

As noted, your case file should be in paper format. It must include.

  1. The work (which will serve the requirement for any deposit copy or copies).
  2. Copyright registration. Prepare a paper copyright form registering the work for your client using the form relevant to your work from the U.S. Copyright office.
  3. Contracts. Prepare any contracts (such as assignments or work-for-hire agreements) that perfect the client’s ownership of the copyright (up to two documents maximum).
  4. Memo. Draft a memo to your client (with CC to me) explaining why:
    1. Form chosen. You chose the registration form you chose as opposed to others.
    2. Filling out of form. Why you filled out each space in the registration form the way you did. This portion of the memo can be organized by the line numbers of your chosen form.
    3. Contracts. Why you provided any contracts and why you drafted them the way you did. If you need more than two contracts, explain what they should do and why.
    4. Exhibits: the memo should include photocopies from the work that justify the assertions in your memo, and additionally include templates for any contracts.
  5. Attribution/Certification. I will provide a certification form regarding the originality of your work and disclosing any and all assistance provided. Consider the form to be a broad disclosure requirement (much broader than FRCP 26(a). You should include any materials that you relied upon that aren’t included elsewhere in the file.
  6. Other information. As always you may include any other materials you think may be relevant.

Format for memo

Choose one of the two following formats:

Times (yucky):

  • Single-spaced with extra space between paragraphs
  • 1″ margins
  • 12-point Times New Roman

Garamond (much better typography, template to be posted):

  • Single-spaced with extra space between paragraphs
  • 1.5″ margins
  • 10.5-point Garamond


Scoring for each component will be done on a 4.0 scale. Below is a brief explanation of what I look for in each category.

Registration form 30%
Memorandum 35%
Contract(s) 25%
Organization of casefile 10%
Attribution & certification 0%*
Total 100%

Note that even though the attribution/certification form is not scored, it is necessary that you property and truthfully fill out the form in order to receive a score. For further details on scoring, see the scoring page.

Important project-related information links.

Additional project information can be found on the pages below. Be sure that you have carefully reviewed all of these materials:

Revised Oct. 18, 2016