Get Legal Help Today
Secured with SHA-256 Encryption
Hi, I am a freelance photographer. I worked for a small wedding company agreeing
to shoot for them and use my pictures for the client verbally, and use my photos
only in a physical portfolio. I am paid by the hour, and the owner claims that
covers buying the right to my photos which was never talked about. There is no
physical contract signed. I shot two wedding for the company and when they gave
my cards back they deleted all my photos so I could not have them. I feel as if this
isn’t right but I don’t know the specifics of the law.
Asked on September 30, 2016 under Business Law, California
SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney
Answered 4 years ago | Contributor
Yes, if you are paid by someone to take photographs for them, the photographs are "works made for hire" and the rights to them belong to the client--to the one who paid you--unless and only if you have a written agreement with them which gives you the rights. In the absence of an agreement, the rights to creative works made while an employee or contractor belongs to the person employing you.
IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.