What is the Express Resolution Process?
The Express Resolution Process (ERP) was developed in consultation with screen industry stakeholders to provide Screenrights members with a framework for the timely resolution of competing claims.
The ERP is based on nine presumptions that may apply in competing claims.
You can download and read the full policy here.
What is a presumption?
A presumption is just a recognition that in some identified circumstances, one party is more likely to be the rightsholder. Presumptions can be challenged and overturned.
The presumptions recognise general principles of Australian copyright law, standard terms of industry agreed contracts and industry practice.
You can review the tests involved in determining the applicability of one or more of the nine presumptions here.
How does the ERP work?
The Express Resolution Process is initiated by Screenrights. We review competing claims against the presumptions in the ERP and assess whether any of the presumptions apply to your competing claim.
We will notify you if your competing claim has been reviewed and it has been found that a presumption is applicable to your specific title. As a general rule, we prioritise medium and high value competing claims and those competing claims with royalties that are expiring earliest.
The presumption will either be in your favour or against (not in your favour).
Presumption in your favour
If the presumption is in your favour you do not need to take any action.
We will contact the other party and provide them with 60 days to submit any evidence to put the presumption into question or overturn the presumption entirely. If the other party does not provide sufficient evidence to overturn the presumption or put the presumption into question, Screenrights will release the royalties to you.
If the other party does overturn the presumption with sufficient evidence we will then ask you to make your own submission and you too will have 60 days to support the presumption.
If the presumption is not in your favour you are provided with an opportunity to challenge the presumption by submitting evidence to Screenrights that either puts the presumption into question or overturns the presumption entirely. You will have 60 days to make a submission.
If you successfully overturn the presumption with sufficient evidence we will then ask the other party to make a submission to provide any evidence to support the presumption and they too will have 60 days.
If the other party does not make an adequate submission with sufficient evidence Screenrights will release the royalties to you.
Presumption in question
There are two ways a presumption may be put into question:
- if either party provides sufficient evidence for the presumption to be questioned, but not sufficient evidence for the presumption to be overturned; and
- if one party provides sufficient evidence to overturn the presumption and the other party provides sufficient evidence to support the presumption.
If a presumption is merely put into question by evidence provided by either or both parties, then the matter cannot be resolved under the ERP. In this case, you can continue to try to resolve the competing claim directly with the other party or seek to resolve the matter under the ADR Procedure.
Will the outcome apply to future royalties?
Yes. Once an outcome has been reached under the ERP, future royalties will be paid to the member with the positive outcome until further evidence is provided that may change the position.
Who makes decisions under the ERP?
Screenrights may make internal decisions such as whether sufficient evidence has been provided to challenge a presumption.
If you disagree with a decision made by Screenrights under the ERP, you have five (5) days to request that the decision be made by an independent expert appointed by an independent organisation.
At any time Screenrights may elect not to make the decision itself and at its own cost send the decision to an independent expert appointed by an independent organisation. In such circumstances, the decision made will not be considered an internal decision.
We publish a summary of decisions made by independent experts or Screenrights to assist members to self-manage competing claims wherever possible without the costs and time involved in using an external decision maker. Reviewing the outcomes of previous decisions may help inform how to proceed with your competing claim.
Timelines for the ERP
Screenrights will only initiate the ERP for competing claims involving deadline royalties where there is sufficient time for the process to be completed prior to the 15 June cut off-date.
Where members are provided with an opportunity to make a submission under the ERP they have 60 days.