Recent developments regarding French online piracy law

By Gregory Tulquois

If French internet users have been caught unlawfully sharing and/or downloading copyrighted works on the internet, they will no longer be subject to disconnection/suspension of their internet access. On 9 July 2013, a French decree removed this penalty. As a reminder, the so-called French HADOPI Law, adopted in 2009, provided for a ‘three-strikes’/graduated response system under which copyright infringers received a series of a maximum of three warning messages and/or a letter, leading to a fine of up to €1,500 (£979) and the suspension of their internet access.

Even though the disconnection of the internet access will no longer be an option for the French authorities, it should be noted that French courts may still order internet suspension as an additional penalty for those guilty of copyright infringement, pursuant to Article L. 335-7 of the French Intellectual Property Code…

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