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Copyright Law: Laws & Regulations

Laws, Regulations, & Procedures

The laws, and rules that govern copyright law are found in two different sources, namely the United States Code (U.S.C.) and the Code of Federal Regulations (C.F.R.).

The United States Code contains laws passed by Congress.

The federal laws governing copyrights are found in the United States Code Title 17

The Code of Federal Regulations contains rules/regulations passed by governmental agencies.  Because the United States Copyright Office office is an agency, it can pass rules/regulations that govern copyrights.

These rules are found in the Code of Federal Regulations Title 37.

Administrative law research

Federal regulations are authorized by legislation enacted by Congress. Some landmark legislation, such as the Clean Air Act and the Civil Rights Act, require execution via federal regulations. Agencies are often referred to as "regulatory" agencies, because they are empowered to create and enforce rules/regulations that execute the laws. Individuals and other entities can be fined, sanctioned, and criminally prosecuted for violating federal regulations.  This libguide will provide you more understanding of administrative law and help you conduct adminstrative law research.

Tracking New Regulations

Several web sites allow you to track agency happenings, including rule-making processes, notices in the Federal Register, and agency decisions. Some of these web sites are listed below: - Promotes public participation in the regulatory process. Search proposed rules by agency and then subscribe to e-mail alerts when new notices are added to a regulation's "docket folder." You can also subscribe to an RSS feed of all notices from the USPTO in the Federal Register here. - Provides a user-friendly way to use and search the Federal Register. You can subscribe to RSS feeds by Agency or Topic. For example, you can subscribe to feeds for the USPTO or the topic Copyrights. 

Electronic Sources-- 37 C.F.R. Patents, Trademarks, and Copyrights


E-CFRs (Free through GPO.Gov)

FDSYS (Free through (1994-2012))


Fastcase (Paid Subscription - OK Bar Member/Available in Library)

HeinOnline (Paid Subscription - Available in Library)

Lexis (Paid Subscription)

Westlaw (Paid Subscription)

Print Sources

37 C.F.R. is available in print at KF70 .A3 date--2nd Floor, Just South of the Circulation Desk

17 U.S.C. is available in print at KF62 year .A2--2nd Floor, North End of Library

Electronic Sources--United States Code (U.S.C.)

17 U.S.C (Title 17) - Copyrights

FDSYS (Free through

Fastcase (Paid Subscription - OK Bar Member/Available in Library)

HeinOnline (Paid Subscription - Available in Library‚Äč)

Lexis U.S.C.S. (Paid Subscription)

Westlaw U.S.C.S. (Paid Subscription)

OSCN Net Oklahoma State Courts Network (Free)

800 N. Harvey Oklahoma City, OK 73102 405.208.5271