The National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) and a test preparation company for certain NCEES exams have reached an $800,000 settlement agreement regarding allegations of the unauthorized use of copyrighted practice questions belonging to NCEES. The agreement was finalized March 15, 2018.
In addition to the settlement payment, the test preparation company has agreed to permanently remove the NCEES-owned material from its print and online materials on an agreed-upon schedule. Per the terms of the agreement, the test preparation company does not admit any guilt regarding copyright infringement or liability to NCEES, and NCEES will not disclose the company’s identity.
NCEES produces licensing exams for the professions of engineering and surveying, including the Fundamentals of Engineering exam and the Principles & Practice of Engineering exam. The nonprofit organization also publishes study materials, including practice exams, to familiarize candidates with the format and content of the exams. NCEES alleged that the test preparation company used NCEES’ copyrighted practice questions in its exam preparation materials without NCEES’ authorization.
“While this settlement includes a monetary payment, NCEES’ focus, as always, was on protecting its intellectual property,” NCEES Chief Executive Officer Jerry Carter said. “NCEES and its volunteers have literally thousands of hours invested in the development of high-quality examination items that assist licensing boards in performing their important work. We will take whatever steps are required to protect our intellectual property. We are glad to have arrived at a resolution that upholds our rights.”