Services for Artists
Legal Services are the central focus of our activities and resources. Over 11,000 artists used VLA legal services last year. The program includes a wide range of services including: the Art Law Line, where artists inform us of their legal issues; the VLA Legal Clinic for VLA members; in-house appointments with staff attorneys; and pro bono placements for low-income artists and nonprofit arts organizations.
Request Legal Assistance
We now offer online intake forms to request legal assistance on arts-related legal matters. Please click on the right form for you:
Art Law Line
Every year VLA receives over 10,000 telephone calls, letters, and internet inquiries about our services. Through the Art Law Line, artists can speak to VLA about their legal issues and schedule an in-house consultation with a staff attorney.
Law students and volunteers staff our legal hotline Monday to Friday, 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
We receive multiple phone calls and messages every day, which we try to respond in a timely fashion. Please be patient while awaiting your returned call. Since our staff is largely made up of law students during school semesters, call-return frequency slows down between fall and spring semesters when school is not in session.
CONTACT: +1.212.319.2787, ext.1
Artists Over Sixty
VLA’s Artists Over Sixty program provides legal services and education to senior artists to address age-specific legal and business issues. The program emphasizes the need for will drafting and estate planning services, and offers access to other legal services, including counseling on the use of artwork on the Internet and other digital media. The program also includes special education courses directed to the needs of senior artists.
Membership benefits for Artists Over Sixty include:
- One free consultation and pro bono placement with a volunteer attorney for all senior artists regarding trusts and estates matters
- One free consultation at VLA for all senior artists on other legal matters
- Unlimited free consultations at VLA for other legal matters, if you income qualify
- Unlimited free pro bono placements with a volunteer attorney for other legal matters, if you income qualify
- Free, unlimited access to legal clinics at member law firms
- Discounted rates on VLA classes
VLA provides a free membership for income qualifying senior artists, and a reduced fee of $75 for all other senior artists.
The Artists Over Sixty program also helps maintain the Elder Artists’ Legal Resource website. This resource is a unique collaboration among Columbia Law School’s Lawyering in the Digital Age Clinic, the City University of New York Elder Law Clinic, Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts, and the Research Center for Arts and Culture (RCAC) at the National Center for Creative Aging. By combining forces, we have created the “next step” to ART CART’s initiative for older artists to document their work: a set of instruments to protect that work after the artist’s death.
Access Elder Artists’ Legal Resource here.
VLA programs are supported, in part, by the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York State Council on the Arts, and by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with The City Council.
From our inception, VLA has played an important role as an advocate for the arts community, from litigation, to making public statements about matters of interest to the arts community, and making recommendations about pending legislation.