For many, the day of a real estate closing is filled with excitement and relief. The process of finding a family home or a building to begin a business is often arduous. On average, the search for a home lasts at least six months. There are long days of showings, stressful negotiations with loan officers, and difficult decisions when purchasing a piece of property. Most buyers and sellers look forward to the day when the paperwork is signed and title, along with all the rights and privileges it affords, passes to the new owners. After closing, the new owners typically assume they are free to enjoy their new property as they see fit. They take pictures of and remodel their home, hire builders or real estate agents to assess or view the land, or even make plans to eventually sell the property. Many of these actions may require sketches of rudimental floor plans or drawings of a home’s layout. However, the Eighth Circuit recently created a barrier for homeowners to use these plans by opening them up to potential copyright infringement lawsuits. In doing so, the Eighth Circuit infringed upon the general ability to enjoy one’s property and made many common uses of private property vulnerable to legal challenges.

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