Resale Right / Droit de Suite Developments


As I noted previously (Forgotten corner of the copyright canvas), California has, until recently, been the only North American jurisdiction with an "artist's resale right / droit de suite" statute. However, as a result of a recent court decision, it may be that North America now has no jurisdictions with such legislation: on May 17, 2012, the United States District Court for the Central District of California held that the California Resale Royalties Act (California Civil Code §986) was an unconstitutional violation of the "Commerce Clause" of the US federal Constitution. For coverage of the decision, see Quinn Heraty, Christine Steiner, and Richard Amada.

The Australian government, meanwhile, has announced $700,000 in funding over two years for "for the collection and payment of royalties to visual artists as well as for a post-implementation review of the scheme" (i.e., the Australian government's resale royalty legislation). The need for continued government funding of the scheme has prompted an interesting discussion on the advisability of resale royalty regimes at The 1709 Blog.