There is one summary. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Introduced in House (09/20/1996)

Boat Protection Act of 1996 - Sets forth copyright provisions regarding the protection of vessel hull designs.

Defines: (1) "plug" as a device or model used to make a mold for the purpose of exact duplication, regardless of whether the device or model has an intrinsic utilitarian function that is not only to portray the appearance of the product or to convey information; (2) "mold" as a matrix or form in which a substance for material is used, regardless of whether the matrix or form has an intrinsic utilitarian function that is not only to portray the appearance of the product or to convey information; and (3) "commercially exploit" for purposes of this Act as the sale or offer for sale of a plug or mold after it is fixed in a vessel hull or otherwise distributed to the public for profit vessel hulls. Extends protection to an original plug or mold fixed in a vessel hull, if: (1) the owner of the plug or mold is a national or domiciliary of the United States or of a foreign nation which is party to a protection treaty to which the United States is also a party on the date on which the plug or mold is registered or first commercially exploited, whichever occurs first; (2) the plug or mold is first commercially exploited in the United States; or (3) the plug or mold comes within the scope of a presidential proclamation extending reciprocal protection to the works of foreign nationals, domiciliaries, or sovereign authorities.

Vests exclusive rights in such plugs or molds in the owner who may transfer (in whole or in part) or bequeath such interest. Recognizes the first registered transfer in case of a conflict.

Sets the protection term for plugs or molds at ten years from date of registration or first commercial exploitation, whichever comes first.

Grants the owner of a plug or mold the exclusive rights to: (1) reproduce the plug or mold; (2) import or distribute a vessel hull in which it is embodied; and (3) cause another to perform such acts. Provides that it is not an infringement of the owner's exclusive rights: (1) to reproduce a plug or mold for purposes of teaching, analyzing, or evaluating concepts, techniques, design, or organization of components in it; or (2) to sell or otherwise dispose of a vessel hull lawfully made under this Act (without the authority of the owner of the plug or mold). Limits the liability of an innocent purchaser of an infringing vessel hull.

Terminates protection of plugs or molds for which an application for registration of a claim of protection is not made within two years of first commercial exploitation.

Sets forth administrative responsibilities of the Register of Copyrights.

Permits the owner of a plug or mold to place on it a specified notice of protection, which is not a condition of protection but shall constitute prima facie evidence of notice of protection.

Entitles the owner of a plug or mold whose protection has been infringed or whose registration of such plug or mold has been refused to institute a civil action. Authorizes the award of attorney's fees to a prevailing party.

Directs the Secretary of the Treasury and the U.S. Postal Service to issue regulations for the enforcement of the right to import a vessel hull in which the plug or mold is embodied. Permits the impoundment and seizure of vessel hulls imported in violation of the owner's exclusive rights.

Sets forth remedies for infringement, including temporary and permanent injunctive relief, actual damages, the award of an infringer's profits to the owner, impoundment orders, and the award of statutory damages instead of actual damages or profits in an amount not to exceed $250,000, under specified conditions.

Makes copyright protection available to any plug or mold fixed in a vessel hull that was first commercially exploited between January 1, 1996, and January 1, 1997, if such claim is registered before January 1, 1998.