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California Passes New Copyright Protection Law for Publicly Available Architectural Designs | New


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The California State Legislature has passed a bill sponsored by the American Institute of Architects California (AIACA) that will limit public access to copyrighted architectural designs for the first time.

The recently signed SB 1214 relates to designs that have been submitted to local and state government offices and will be effective Jan. 1, 2023. San Francisco-based architect Cary Bernstein is the member who initiated the act and says that it will strengthen protections already provided by federal copyright law that are not properly supported by planning processes within the state.

“The Law Balances California Ralph M. Brown Law which guarantees the right of the public “to attend and participate in meetings of local legislative bodies” along with longstanding federal copyright laws that protect architectural designs,” Bernstein said in a statement. I happen to love law, and this issue allowed me to pursue my interest through a project for [the chapter].”

Drawings, site plans and other types of information are protected by the Works of Architecture Copyright Protection Act 1990. even more sophisticated attempts to duplicate their designs, making it difficult to do business in a competitive industry that fundamentally depends on the creativity and originality of a particular proposition.

Previously on Archinect: Hey, it’s mine! Archinect Sessions Legal Correspondent Brian Newman on Ownership of Architectural Designs

With the help of attorney Steven Weinberg (who co-wrote the 1990 amendment) and the chapter’s vice president of government relations Robert Ooley, State Senator Brian Jones eventually took the matter to Sacramento. where it passed easily before being signed into law by Governor Gavin Newsom. . The chapter compares it to similar protections granted to professionals in other artistic fields and asserts that its content goes to the heart of its organizational mission.

“SB 1214 reflects two major principles,” AIACA Executive Vice President Nicki Dennis Stephens said in the end. “The equivalence of an architect’s work with other fields such as art and music, and the individual’s abilities to effect change.”