Guidance

Collective rights management after Brexit

After Brexit, EEA collective management organisations may not automatically represent UK right holders and collective management organisations.

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Collective management organisations (CMOs) are not-for-profit or member-governed bodies that license rights on behalf of copyright owners.

CMOs in the EEA are governed by the Collective Rights Management Directive (the CRM Directive). This includes obligations to represent on request right holders from any EEA member state unless there are objectively justified reasons not to do so.

EEA CMOs that offer multi-territorial licensing of musical works for online services are also required to represent on request the catalogues of other EEA CMOs that do not offer those licences.

The UK has implemented the CRM Directive via the Collective Management of Copyright (EU Directive) Regulations 2016. The government has published guidance on those regulations.

Collective rights management after Brexit

After Brexit, EEA CMOs will not be required by the CRM Directive to represent UK right holders or to represent the catalogues of UK CMOs for online licensing of musical rights.

UK right holders and CMOs will still be able to request representation, but EEA CMOs may be free to refuse those requests depending on the law in individual member states.

In the UK, the government will maintain existing obligations on UK CMOs, including those specific to multi-territorial licensing of musical works for online services.

UK CMOs that offer multi-territorial licensing of online rights in musical works will continue to be required to represent on request the catalogue of other CMOs (UK or EEA) for multi-territorial licensing purposes.

Published 18 October 2019