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Pinedale Online > News > January 2021 > Judge rules National Park Service cannot require commercial filming permits
Judge rules National Park Service cannot require commercial filming permits
Violates protected expressive speech under the First Amendment
January 31, 2021

A Washington D.C. federal judge recently ruled that it is unconstitutional for the National Park Service (NPS) to charge fees or require permits for commercial filming on land it manages. In late 2018, two NPS officers issued a man a citation for filming without a permit in public areas of the Yorktown Battlefield in Colonial National Historical Park in Virginia. In December 2019, the man sued the U.S. Attorney General along with officials from the Department of the Interior and National Park Service challenging the constitutionality of the rule. Central to the dispute is whether the act of filming is protected speech or just the finished work, and whether the commercial nature of a project could qualify as a content-based restriction. The ruling did not apply to commercial still photography, however, as that aspect of the Park Service permitting requirements was not challenged.

The Judge issued a declaration that the National Park Service's requirements "that those engaged in 'commercial filming' must obtain permits and pay fees are unconstitutional under the First Amendment," and she issued a permanent injunction enjoining the permit and fee requirements for commercial filming and "the prosecution and the imposition of criminal liability thereunder."

Click on the links below for more on this story.

Related Links:
NPS canít require commercial filming permits, violates First Amendment buckrail.com, January 29, 2021
National Park Service Can't Require Permits and Fees for Commercial Filming, Judge Rules hollywoodreporter.com, January 25, 2021
Ruling: National Park Service Canít Ask For Commercial Filming Fees/Permits diyphotography.net, January 26, 2021
Judge: Commercial Filmmakers Don't Need Permits In National Parks nationalparkstraveler.org, January 26, 2021


Pinedale Online > News > January 2021 > Judge rules National Park Service cannot require commercial filming permits

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