May a state assert copyright in the publication of its legal materials?

That is the issue presented in a case that the Supreme Court will review next term. Its outcome could shape the future of innovation in legal research and the public’s right of access to the laws that govern them.

The case, Georgia v. Public.Resource.Org, involves the state of Georgia’s claim of copyright in the Official Code of Georgia Annotated (OCGA), the official codification of Georgia’s laws, which is published by LexisNexis under contract by the state, and which includes annotations written by LexisNexis, but subject to editorial control and approval by the Georgia Code Revision Commission.

I describe the history of the case and the issues to be decided by the Supreme Court in my column this week at Above the Law. If you are interested, read it here: Can A State Copyright the Law? SCOTUS Will Decide.

Photo of Bob Ambrogi Bob Ambrogi

Bob is a lawyer, veteran legal journalist, and award-winning blogger and podcaster. In 2011, he was named to the inaugural Fastcase 50, honoring “the law’s smartest, most courageous innovators, techies, visionaries and leaders.” Earlier in his career, he was editor-in-chief of several legal publications, including The National Law Journal, and editorial director of ALM’s Litigation Services Division.