MUC109 LEC 10. Contracts

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Introduction to Contracts in Music

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MUC109 LEC 10. Contracts

  1. 1. Music Business Essentials CONTRACTS & LEGAL ISSUES © 2006 musicbizclasses.com
  2. 2. Legal Basics • Attorneys handle legal matters & must be licensed to practice in the state(s) in which they practice • You may provide your own legal counsel • ONLY licensed attorneys can dispense legal advice to others • Typical payment arrangements for attorneys: – Hourly Fee – Flat Fee – Monthly Retainer – % or points of clients gross income (approx. 5 %) © 2006 musicbizclasses.com
  3. 3. Legal Basics • Attorneys can be generalists or specialists • Not all attorneys will understand the music business--look for someone who works consistently in the music industry • Types of law needed in the music industry: – Contract & Business Law – Intellectual Property Law- especially Copyright and Trademark – Tax Law – Estate Law © 2006 musicbizclasses.com
  4. 4. Typical Music Business Contracts • Band Partnership agreement • Co-Writer agreement • Publisher agreement • Artist Management agreement • Label shopping agreement • Licensing agreements • Recording contract • Distribution deals • Performance/Live Event agreement • Merchandising agreement © 2006 musicbizclasses.com
  5. 5. Elements of a standard contract • Date & Jurisdiction • Parties to the agreement • Term- length • Exclusivity • Ownership rights • Payment terms and arrangement • Credits © 2006 musicbizclasses.com
  6. 6. Elements of a standard contract • Warranty • Breach or Default • Expenses/Chargebacks • Audits • Arbitration • Option to renew © 2006 musicbizclasses.com
  7. 7. Working with Attorneys • Study your business situation and analyze exactly what you need from the attorney- – Planning and implementing business structures – Drafting a contract for you and your new manager – Application for a U.S. Trademark – Risk Analysis for your new venue • Many attorneys work on “billable hours”- conversations can be charged to you © 2006 musicbizclasses.com
  8. 8. Working with Attorneys • Keep your discussions focused and to the point-designate only one point of contact between a group and the attorney • Hire the best attorney your money can buy- it will save you money and time ultimately-- try to avoid using friends, family or acquaintances as your attorney, unless they are highly qualified to give music industry-specific legal advice © 2006 musicbizclasses.com
  9. 9. Working with Attorneys • If you are signing a contract with a record label, make sure your attorney knows how to draft and redline recording contracts • Don’t sign a record contract without experienced legal representation • Your attorney is a service provider-- you can terminate your relationship with your attorney at any time © 2006 musicbizclasses.com
  10. 10. Legal Resources •Legal Self-Representation: Nolo Press- nolo.com •Free Legal Advice: Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts: http://www.askthemusiclawyer.org Ask the Music Lawyer™ hotline 212.319.2787 x1 © 2006 musicbizclasses.com
  11. 11. For Educational Use Only This slide presentation is part of the Music Business Essentials series. Contact info@musicbizclasses.com for more information © 2006 musicbizclasses.com

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