The CEO of a legal research service that’s free to members of the State Bar of Georgia said his company’s suit against the Georgia secretary of state’s designated publisher of the state’s rules and regulations is about “whether private publishers can own public law.”

Ed Walters’ firm, Washington-based Fastcase Inc., has sued Lawriter LLC in federal court in Atlanta. Fastcase contends that Lawriter cannot legally claim it holds a copyright to rules and regulations promulgated by Georgia’s state agencies, even though it has an exclusive publishing contract with the Georgia Secretary of State’s Office.

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