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States Left to Scramble After High Court Axes Annotation Model

May 1, 2020, 4:01 PM

Several states with official annotated codes may find it tricky to adjust to the Supreme Court’s invalidation of Georgia’s copyright on its annotations.

The high court voted 5-4 that legislatures can’t “author” a work in its official law-shaping capacity, voiding Georgia’s claim to a copyright in the Official Code of Georgia Annotated (OCGA). That scrapped Georgia’s model for granting LexisNexis exclusive rights to sell the state code with related legal research, compiled at the state’s behest, as the “official code,” in exchange for capping the price.

Nearly two dozen states that use similar models now must determine how the decision...

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