Organisations and entities to be supervised
Collective management organisations
The obligations of a collective management organisation under the Collective Management Organisations Act (Verwertungsgesellschaftengesetz) include obtaining authorisation from the DPMA as the competent supervisory authority prior to the commencement of its business. At present, 13 collective management organisations have such authorisation in Germany, which is granted in consultation with the Federal Cartel Office.
If collective management organisations established in another member state of the European Union (EU) or another Contracting Party of the Agreement on the European Economic Area (EEA) are active in Germany, the DPMA ensures that the collective management organisations conduct their activities in compliance with the provisions that the country where they are established has adopted to implement Directive 2014/26/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 26 February 2014 on collective management of copyright and related rights and multi-territorial licensing of rights in musical works for online use in the internal market.
Collective management organisations established in another member state of the EU or the EEA are required to obtain authorisation for their business only in exceptional cases. However, they must notify the DPMA of their activity if they manage rights resulting from the Copyright Act (Urheberrechtsgesetz). Currently, nine collective management organisations established in another member state of the European Union or another contracting party of the Agreement on the European Economic Area have notified the DPMA accordingly.
Dependent and independent management entities
Since the introduction of the Collective Management Organisations Act in 2016, the DPMA has also been the supervisory authority for dependent and independent management entities.
Dependent management entities are subsidiary companies of one or more collective management organisations. To the extent collective management organisations outsource certain activities, such as the collection of remuneration claims against users, and the subsidiaries thus themselves act as a collective management organisation, they must also observe the provisions of the Collective Management Organisations Act and are subject to supervision by the DPMA. Unlike collective management organisations, dependent management entities are generally not required to obtain authorisation. However, to the extent they manage copyright or related rights, they must notify the DPMA of their activities. Currently, seven dependent management entities have notified their activities.
Independent management entities are usually profit-oriented entities. The main difference from collective management organisations is that independent management entities are not associations of the creative people themselves. Rather, their organisation is independent of the right holders. Nevertheless, they collectively manage the rights of the right holders like a collective management organisation and share their income with them. Only certain provisions of the Collective Management Organisations Act, in particular information requirements, apply to independent management entities; in this respect, they are also subject to supervision by the DPMA. They must notify the DPMA of the commencement of their management activities. Currently, two independent management entities have notified the DPMA accordingly.
Last updated: 11 November 2021