I am a retired solicitor with over 14 years experience specialising in entertainment industry legal work (commercial and litigation). I ran my own law firm as a sole practitioner for 14 years until October 2008 (with a 100% claims free record).
During my career I have dealt with thousands of contracts and advised on scores of disputes. I have also lectured at colleges on music law. I started out as a contracts advisor at the Musicians Union many years ago before moving into private practice. I have been involved running labels in the past and am a musician myself.
Over the years I’ve represented many indie labels/production companies, artists, writers, managers, producers/remixers, publishers and so forth. From big names to small names (Dance, Reggae, Soul/RnB, World Music etc).
|AREAS OF WORK COVERED:
(a) SUPPLY OF CONTRACTS
Any type of industry agreement drafted to clients' specific requirements (Recording, Licensing, Publishing, Management, Profit Share/Royalty deals, Producer, Remixer, Ft Vocalist, Session, Tour, Agency, Co-Writers, Band Agreements, Distribution, Commissions, Clearances, Standard Terms and Conditions etc). Simple 'easy to understand' layout and language. All clients' queries answered in plain straight-forward english without the legal mumbo-jumbo.
(b) CONTRACT VETTING/NEGOTIATING - All entertainment industry contracts covered. Happy to give a quick preliminary opinion on a deal and/or to handle all negotiations through to signature.
(c) BUSINESS AFFAIRS - For labels, publishers, production companies, internet sites etc I can offer a “one-stop” service for all a client's likely business needs (ie issuing/negotiating contracts, copyright/clearance queries, registrations and so forth).
(d) ARTIST REPRESENTATION - Need representing on a matter? Happy to assist whatever the client's field of work (ie writers, actors, musicians, graphic designers, dancers, models etc).
Band Disputes: The band “fall-out” scenario is very common in the music business. It can have important consequences on the band name, who owns what, the right to exploit material etc. I’ve handled a range of these, and can give practical advice.
Songwriting Disputes: Been cut out of your share of a song? Someone copied your song? Advice given.
Contract Disputes: Need to know where you legally stand under a contract? Whether the other side’s conduct amounts to a breach? What your remedies are? I can normally give a quick answer.
(f) CLAIMS – Need advice on a potential claim against someone whose infringed your rights? Speak to me.
(g) COPYRIGHT - Advice on whether you have a copyright interest in something, what that means in practical terms and how to protect/enforce it
(h) MONEY COLLECTION - Had a song/record out and never received money for it (or not sure you got what were entitled to)? I can help. There may also be sources of money you didn’t know about.
(i) SAMPLE CLEARANCE - Need to clear a sample? I am experienced in this area and can assist. I can also help identify samples and rights owners where they are unknown.
(j) ARTIST MANAGEMENT – I can offer clients nearly all the services a traditional “manager” might offer in the entertainment industry.
(k) RIGHTS REGISTRATION ADVICE - Guidance on which societies to join (and/or to take care of this for the client), whether in UK or overseas.
(l) INTERNET SITES - Advise on compliance issues.
(m) WORK PERMITS FOR OVERSEAS PERFORMERS - For costs reasons I would generally refer these out to specialist permit agencies, but I can give clients guidance on procedures and what they will need.
(n) BUSINESS START-UP ADVICE - The basic do's and don'ts for any new operation. Practical advice built on years of watching other people's mistakes.
My rates are highly competitive. I strongly doubt a client will find cheaper anywhere for my level of experience and know-how. If you go to a solicitors firm you may well find your work being done by a junior lawyer with far less experience and at a much higher cost.
Quotes promptly given on request.
FREE INITIAL TELEPHONE CONSULTATION
If you have an entertainment industry problem, I am happy to give a free initial tel consultation and advice on the best way to handle things.