Copyright Specialist (Information)

Washington, D.C
Sep 23, 2020
Oct 01, 2020
Full Time


Copyright is a form of legal protection provided by the laws of the United States (title 17, U. S. Code) to authors of literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, and other works. The Copyright Specialist (Information) has a primary responsibility of providing information services to the general public on the mission and responsibilities of the U.S. Copyright Office, its regulations, procedures registration, and recordation practices, and to provide general information on copyright to visitors.

Learn more about this agency


The United States Copyright Office, located within the Library of Congress and under the direction of the Register of Copyrights, administers the Copyright Law, advises Congress and government agencies on legal and policy matters; provides international representation on copyright issues; administers the national copyright registration system; provides collections materials to the Library through voluntary registration and mandatory deposit programs; records documents relating to copyright chain of title; administers statutory license provisions of the law, including collecting and distributing royalties; maintains the world's largest database of copyright public records; and, provides information and reference services to the public.

The Office of Public Information and Education is responsible for providing information to the public and to the copyright community regarding U.S. copyright law and Copyright Office services. The Copyright Information Section, also called the Public Information Office, is the primary liaison between the Copyright Office and the copyright community.

Responds to the public's general and specific inquiries related to copyright law, regulations, and Copyright Office practices. Responds to applicants or their representatives either in writing (with as letter or email) or by telephone to answer routine copyright-related inquiries concerning registration, recordation, and other copyright related matters. Conveys information regarding procedures and policy for obtaining certified copies of copyright records and materials. Conveys information regarding the recordation of mask works, vessel hull designs, and for registration of online services providers. Responds to general questions regarding accounting procedures, compulsory licensing, workflow, mandatory deposit, search requests, and office records. Interprets and explains correspondence received from the Copyright Office.

When appropriate, refers applicants and their representatives to information located on the Copyright Office web site. Assists the public in the use of Copyright Office reference sources. Refers the public to sources of information outside the Copyright Office. Uses Copyright Office information systems to track status of claims in process and completed registrations. Exercises judgment and discretion when responding to information requests. Unusual or complex inquiries will be referred to the Supervisor or senior staff.

Instructs visitors in how to use the public Card Catalog, legislative reports and hearings, annual reports, and other copyright reference sources maintained in the Public Information Office.

For copyright materials submitted through the Public Information Office, reviews the complete range of claims to copyright and determines whether claims submitted for copyright are registrable. Researches and acts to resolve various copyright problems or inquiries. Performs an initial review of applications, deposits, and attachments submitted for adequacy and compliance with general legal requirements and formalities including copyright notice, copyrightability, eligibility, completeness, best edition, publication, certification, identification of preexisting materials, and other factors relating to the registration/recordation process. Assists applicants in completing applications for registration and recordation. Resolves problems with applications or deposits prior to their submission that may delay registration.

Possesses and maintains a thorough knowledge of current examining practices and how these practices impact filing procedures.

Receives requests for Special Handling and reviews them for compliance with office procedures and regulations. Forwards requests for expedited processing.

Calculates and accepts fees for all materials submitted for registration, recordation, or other copyright services and issues written receipts. Ensures proper fees are collected for requested services, and that adequate funds are available if a charge is made against a Deposit Account. Processes payments by credit card. Performs daily close out of credit card transactions.

Conducts regularly scheduled tours, and makes presentations for groups interested in Copyright Offices activities. Provides special tours of the Copyright Office and its exhibits. Tailors tours to the nature of the groups' interests, requests, culture, and educational levels. Arranges for visits to areas not usually open to the public.

Conducts overviews on copyright and orientations of the Copyright Office. Provides information for diverse types of visitors (intellectual property attorneys, foreign officials, students and creators).

Supports educational programs for varied audiences such as writers, artists and songwriters. Prepares information packets and other resources based on the information needs of particular groups.

Performs other duties as assigned.

Supervisory status

Promotion Potential


Conditions of Employment

No additional requirements to those listed above.


Applicants must have had progressively responsible experience and training sufficient in scope and quality to furnish them with an acceptable level of the following knowledge, skills, and abilities to perform the duties of the position without more than normal supervision.

Ability to research, analyze and evaluate issues.**

Skill in providing customer service.**

Knowledge of law, regulations, policies, procedures, and practices.**

Ability to communicate in writing.

Ability to plan, prioritize, organize and execute work.

Ability to utilize computer technology/software applications.

Ability to communicate effectively other than in writing.


Additional information

This position is located in the Copyright Information Section, Office of Public Information and Education, Copyright Office.

The position description numbers for this position are 109704 and 109705.

The salary range indicated reflects the locality pay adjustments for the Washington, D.C., Metropolitan area.

This is a non-supervisory, bargaining unit position.

Although it is the Library's policy to afford the maximum pay benefit to employees when setting rates of pay, a new appointee who has had no previous Federal service will generally be paid the minimum step of the grade.

The Library of Congress is an equal opportunity employer. Women, minorities, and persons with disabilities who meet eligibility requirements are strongly encouraged to apply.

Applicants must submit a complete application package that is received by the closing date of this announcement.

This agency provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities. If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, please email The decision on granting reasonable accommodation will be determined on a case-by-case basis.

The Library of Congress is the national library of the United States and is part of the Legislative Branch of the Federal government. As such, all positions are in the excepted service.

Appointment/retention is subject to a favorable evaluation of an appropriate personnel security/suitability investigation.

The Library reserves the right to fill a lesser or greater number of vacancies indicated during the life of this vacancy announcement.

Initial appointments, permanent or indefinite, to the Library of Congress require completion of a one-year probationary period.

The Library of Congress may offer repayment for all or part of federally insured student loans. However, not all service units within the Library of Congress participates in the repayment of federally insured student loans. Therefore, determination to repay a federally insured student loan is subject to approval by the appropriate service unit.

How You Will Be Evaluated

You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.

The Library of Congress evaluates applicants through an applicant questionnaire and a structured interview. Applicants may also be screened for some jobs through licensing, certification, and/or education requirements, a narrative/application review, and/or a preliminary telephone interview.

The knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs) that are marked with a double asterisk (**) in the vacancy announcement and the applicant questionnaire are considered the most critical for a position. To be considered for final selection, applicants must demonstrate fully acceptable experience in these designated KSAs in the narrative/application review, preliminary telephone and/or full structured interview.

The various assessment tools listed above are designed to verify or explore applicants' experience, knowledge, and training directly related to the job in order to identify the best qualified applicants for selection.

For more information regarding eligibility requirements, please see the Library of Congress Merit Selection Plan, Section X.D, at: .

To preview questions please click here .

Background checks and security clearance

Security clearance

Drug test required

Required Documents

Current or former federal employees must submit their most recent Notification of Personnel Action (SF-50 or equivalent).

If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:

Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education .

Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.

Similar jobs