Can I sue the company I work for due to using my photo beyond literature?

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Can I sue the company I work for due to using my photo beyond literature?

Approximately fourteen years ago I was asked to have my photo taken to put on
product catalog/promotional literature. I signed a consent form on the day for
the date that they took the photo. Over the next several months I was asked
again a total of I believe four times to have more pictures taken in which I
didn’t sign any agreement for. for many years my photo went all over the world
on literature. I never questioned it, I signed for it, but signed only once
for a specific day of shooting. Anyway, fast forward to a couple of years ago
all of the sudden people I work around started teasing me about being on the
company truck. Low and behold there I was, on the side of the truck. I didn’t
mind being there but it felt intrusive to use it without my permission or at
least saying something to me. I have been a Machinist in my company for 15
years which I enjoy doing and the pay is 22.00 per hour, not bad, not great but
I manage. Two weeks ago our dept. was told our jobs are going away and we will
have to go elsewhere in the company and take a four dollar an hour cut in pay.
I never believed in biting the hand that feeds me so I never pursued anything
until now. I am considering at least the question. I’ve now been with this
company for 25 years, 15 as a machinist and I need to ask the question. Do I
have a case against my employer?

Asked on October 6, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, Indiana

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

You may have a case: it depends on what exactly that consent form said. Did it only allow them to use it on catalogs and promotional literature, not other uses? Did was time limited (e.g. consent for one year)? If so, if they are violating the terms of the agreement you signed, then they are using your image without consent and you may be entitled to compensation. 
On the other hand, if the consent form you originally signed was open-ended--basically, permission to use the image where and when they like--then they have the right to do this. So it all comes down to the agreement's specific terms.


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