10 Legal Tools You Don’t Have to Kick 2020 Into the Past

2020 has been the most unique year of our professional careers. We learned to weather a pandemic, found creative ways to continue business, and we’ve learned to excel in the face of adversity. As we close out the year and move into 2021 – fingers crossed it’ll be better – we want to share with you our top products of 2020. These products are items we suggest for most business owners to have in their legal protection arsenal.

1. Force Majeure Provision:

Already have a solid contract but missing a Force Majeure Clause? No worries!  The Force Majeure Clause is a provision in a contract that excuses a party from not performing its contractual obligations that become impossible or impracticable, due to an event or effect that the parties could not have anticipated or controlled.  Note: This is not a full contract. This is only a provision to be added to your existing services contract.

2. Model Release Form:

Understanding how to legally protect your photography business can be overwhelming. From marketing materials to portfolio usage, knowing where and how you can use your images can be intimidating. That’s why we offer an affordable Model Release Form tailored to professionals just like you. Our team of lawyers and photographers at TheLawTog® develop, review, and approve every release.

If you plan to use your images for advertising or portfolio purposes, a model release form is an essential way to protect your photography business. A model release is generally signed by the subject of a photograph. It gives you permission to license or use the image. This form also releases any claims the client may have to future compensation for use of images. This protects you from legal action and eliminates the unknowns around publishing images.

These model release forms allow clients to easily and legally give permission for use of their photographic images (not audio or video). Please note – if you are looking for a document that gives the client complete confidence that you will not share the photographs, you need the Privacy of Photographs Agreement.

Continuing to photograph in the face of COVID-19/Coronavirus pandemic can be a necessity for many photography business owners. A Release of Liability Form is a legal document between the Releasor (person promising not to sue), and the Releasee (person or company who is potentially liable). By signing the document, your client agrees not to sue you (or your company), for past or future injuries or damages. This single document can give you peace of mind by eliminating the unknowns. Our Release of Liability Form includes a parent release for minors, as well.

Not only do our photography release forms provide legal protection, they position you as a credible business owner. Clients will respect your clear rules, detailed expectations, and you!  TheLawTog does not promote continued services against governmental directives, use at your own risk.

4. COVID-19 Shutdown Reopening Guide:

Knowing when, how, and what to do while reopening after COVID-19 shutdown can be overwhelming. TheLawTog® COVID-19 Shutdown Reopening Guide provides an easy and quick checklist, as well as swipe-copy template for communicating procedures for reopening to clients, and links to other resources to protect your photography business during COVID-19 shutdown reopening phases. It is our goal to take some of the stress out of your reopening plans.

5. Photography Print Release:

From printing rights to social media usage, the complexities of legally protecting your images can be intimidating. Since many clients opt for digital files to share on social media and print themselves, giving clients digital files is a great way to earn extra income. But you need to do it the right way. If you want to retain rights to all images, a  Photography Print Release provides the legal protection you need, while giving permissions to the client for digital image reproduction.

A Photography Print Release gives your client permission to print and share images for personal use.  It does not permit them to use images for commercial use or other reasons.  To help educate and protect your art, this document also reemphasizes copyright laws.

6. All-in-One Essentials Portrait Photography Contract Bundle:

TheLawTog’s All-in-One Essentials Portrait Photography Contract Bundleis the little black dress of contracts. This one contract will help protect you in a multitude of sessions including family, maternity, children, portraits & more. We know it can be overwhelming to run your own photography business. From contracts and release forms to intellectual property law, the complexities are intimidating. As a team of lawyers and photographers, we know what it’s like. And we don’t want fear of the unknown keeping you up at night. That’s why we offer affordable photography contract templates tailored to professionals just like you.

7. Commercial Contract Bundle:

Commercial photography presents a unique set of challenges that most photographers are not versed in. Our Commercial Contract Bundle protects your photography business and sets expectations with clients with this lawyer-drafted commercial photography contract bundle. This customizable lawyer-drafted contract bundle covers you when working with:

    • Headshots and Personal Branding Photography
    • Product Photography
    • Book Author
    • Music Artists
    • Designers
    • Marketing Photography for Influencers
    • … and anyone else working in the commercial industry!

8. All-in-One Essentials Wedding Photography Contract Bundle:

As an unforgettable celebration, weddings must be treated with the utmost legal care. Therefore, legal protection as a wedding photographer is non-negotiable. Whether you’re starting out, shooting for free, or an experienced professional, the All-in-One Essentials Wedding Photography Contract Bundle will help to cover all your legal bases. Consulting with couples and clearly outlining expectations will help protect you in the high risk world of weddings, ensuring you have happy clients and a protected business.

9. COVID-19 Legal Document Bundle:

COVID-19 has thrown a wrench in everyone’s plans – and that definitely means legal issues for photographers. We specifically developed the COVID-19 Legal Document Bundle to help aid you in this time!

Want to snag all of our COVID-19 specific contract template forms and checklists? We’ve put them all into this one bundle for you!

    • Rescheduling Addendum
    • Ala Carte Force Majeure Provision
    • Reopening Checklist
    • Reopening Procedures Notice Template
    • Cancellation of Contract
    • Covid-Specific Liability Waiver

10. Website Terms Bundle:

One of the most overlooked aspects in a photographer’s business is their website. The Website Terms Bundle helps to ensure that anyone using a website for their potential clients and existing clients is protected. It is especially important if visitors are:

    • submitting their information through contract forms
    • signing up for your email newsletter list
    • you’re using pixels/tracking such as Facebook Pixels and Google Analytics.

Some states require the use of privacy policies – even if yours doesn’t, these documents are a great way to help set expectations and protect your photography business!

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