Who will own the copyright for photo and video materials if we hire professionals to do this without signing any contracts?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Who will own the copyright for photo and video materials if we hire professionals to do this without signing any contracts?

We are small company orginizing voice competition. We need to hire a photographer and videographer for our Final Round event and sell the pictures and video they will make afterwards. They will be paid by check and receive a 1099 form from us.

Asked on September 4, 2016 under Business Law, New York

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Generally, when you commission photography or videos (or any creative work) from a professional who is not an employee of yours,  in the absence of a contract or agreement to the contrary, the client/customer (that is, your company) will own the copyright as a "work made for hire." The law gives copyright generally to the one who paid to the have the work created, (It is different if you buy an already-existing work; in that case, copyright generally remains with the artist, unless there is a contract or agreement giving it to the customer.) That said, it is clearly better to have copyright ownership set out in a contract or agreement, to avoid any confusion or disputes later.


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.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption