People are often unsure when they might be able to use the help of an entertainment lawyer, especially if they have never worked with one before. Here are a bunch of different situations where contacting a lawyer is probably the right move.
As a Band or Performing Artist:
- When you are negotiating with a label or publisher to release your music.
- When you are trademarking your band’s name or symbol.
- When you feel you are not being paid appropriately, by your label, manager, a venue, or otherwise.
- When you have been offered a license for the use of your work.
- When you are using samples in your music that need to be cleared.
- When you are being offered to work with a PR or other promotion company.
- When you are deciding how each band member will be paid.
- When you are incorporating as an LLC or another entity.
As a Photographer:
- When you are contracting for the license, purchase, or another use of your work.
- When you notice your work being used without your permission.
- When you run into a dispute over the use of your work.
- When you are working with advertisers or being contracted at a pay rate.
As a Writer:
- When you are signing a contract with a new employer.
- When you see your work being used inappropriately.
- When you are not being paid correctly or on time.
- When you are considering working with a publisher or agency.
- When you fear your work is being copied, misrepresented, or infringed upon.
As a Filmmaker
- When you are contracting with other workers on a project.
- When you are dealing with producers and investors.
- When you are licensing your work to an advertiser or another entity.
- When you are dealing with possible samples or uses of other companies’ intellectual property.
As a Employee (whether in a creative industry or not):
- When you are signing a contract including employment agreements for a new job
- When you are negotiating for a raise from your employer
As an Artist Manager:
- When signing a contract with an artist or client.
- When your client needs legal advice for an offered contract.
- When you feel you are not being paid appropriately.
As a Record Label:
- When you are signing an artist.
- When there has been an issue with artist payment.
- When you have been offered a license for your music.
- When you are organizing your label as a business.
- When you are hiring employees, or contracting with work for hire freelancers.
As a Small Business or Startup Company:
- When you are incorporating as an LLC, or Corporation.
- When you are contracting with freelancers, employees, independent contracts or other companies.
- When you need standardized contracts for your clients or purchasers.