Caselist

Last Updated: Friday, September 23, 2022

Thank you for your interest in volunteering with VLA by taking on a pro bono case! If you have not yet attended a New Attorney Orientation, please click here for more information about volunteering with VLA.

Some cases may be on review with another attorney. As one case can only be on review with one attorney at a time, cases marked as “On Review” are not currently available. However, these cases may return to the list if not accepted by the reviewing attorney, so please indicate your interest so that your name may be added to the queue in the event the case becomes available.

To request a case, please email Emma Frean at probono@vlany.org. Please indicate the case number in the email subject line.

Receive CLE credit for pro bono work

VLA is approved to provide CLE credit to attorneys who provide pro bono legal services through our organization. Eligible pro bono activity is limited to legal services performed within New York State to clients unable to afford counsel, and is not available to attorneys volunteering at a clinic.

Credit for pro bono legal services shall be awarded in the following ratio: one (1) CLE credit for every 120 minutes of eligible pro bono legal service. A maximum of ten (10) pro bono CLE credits may be earned during any biennial reporting cycle.

Newly admitted New York attorneys may earn pro bono CLE credit only for the purpose of carrying over those credits to the following biennial reporting cycle, in partial fulfillment of the pro bono requirement for experienced attorneys.

Music

17753
Client, a performance artist, seeks assistance with terminating an artist management agreement.

17697 
Client, a Texas-based musician, seeks assistance with terminating an artist management agreement with a New York-based manager.

17614
Client, a well-known figure from the 1960s New York LGBTQ+ ballroom culture, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to negotiate and redraft a Featured Artist Agreement governed by the law of England and Wales.

Theater

17552
Client, a playwright and performer, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to draft an agreement with collaborators in a musical tribute show.

Film/TV

17723
Client, the director of a documentary focusing on LGBTQ+ human rights issues in Iran, seeks a fair use assessment concerning use of unlicensed material in the film.

17599
Client, a filmmaker who produced a documentary that uses stand-up comedy to illustrate social justice issues, seeks a fair use assessment concerning the use of unlicensed comedy clips in the film. If advisable, Client seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to obtain licenses to use the clips.

Music

17666
Client, a songwriter about whom a major media company in England is producing a documentary, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to establish ownership of copyright in songs she wrote in 1970, which will be featured in the film.

17644
Client, a musician, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to obtain clearance for the use of sample tracks for songs Client has produced.

Theater

17711
Client, a playwright who wrote a musical revue that has been produced worldwide, seeks assistance evaluating his legal rights with respect to a new work that is based on his musical.

17651
Client, a performance artist who originated a character in the 1990s, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to assess the viability of a copyright infringement claim against another performer whose character Client believes is similar to her own.

17351
Client, a playwright who has written a play based on historical events in Germany during World War II, seeks the assistance of an attorney familiar with German law to analyze potential risks related to the historical figures’ rights of publicity.

Literary

17529
Client, a photographer, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to assess whether online comments about a defunct publisher may expose her to a potential claim for defamation.

Dance

17756 
Client, a dancer, educator, and advocate for equitable practices within the dance industry, seeks assistance with recovering compensation from a dance publication company for the unauthorized use of his teaching materials on a subscription-based service.

Film/TV

17779 – NEW CASE
Client, a videographer, seeks a volunteer attorney to assist her recovering footage that was wrongfully sold to a production company for use in a documentary without payment to her.

17743
Client, a filmmaker, is seeking advice regarding her legal rights to stop another filmmaker from using footage of her in his film.

17729
Client, an actor who appeared in a 2019 commercial for a meal delivery service, seeks assistance in requesting additional compensation for the continued airing of the commercial.

17725
Client, a graffiti artist whose work was used without permission in a film released on a streaming service, seeks assistance evaluating his legal rights and potential remedies against the filmmakers.

17724
Client, a comedian, actor and writer, seeks assistance with resolving an issue with a former co-worker who is damaging his reputation.

17557
Client, a documentary filmmaker, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to negotiate with the subject of her film, who now refuses to allow her to release and market the film. If he refuses to mediate or negotiate, an attorney should be prepared to litigate.

Literary

17662
Client, an author who had ended her relationship with an online publisher in 2012, seeks assistance with preventing her former publisher from continuing to sell her book and receive outstanding royalty payments.

Music

17715
Client, a musician, seeks an assessment as to whether he has a valid copyright infringement claim, and to pursue relief, if appropriate.

17700
Client, the heir of her father’s music, seeks help settling a copyright issue with one of her father’s old collaborators who has re-released some of his music.

17534
Client, a musician and record producer, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to request the takedown of an album he produced for a former collaborator with whom he no longer wishes to be associated.

16535
Client, a folk musician who co-founded a band and is a member of the band’s limited liability company, seeks the assistance of a volunteer litigator to assist with the contentious dissolution of the LLC.

Photography

17768 – NEW CASE
Client, a photographer, seeks assistance with recovering compensation from a national publication that used his photograph without consent.

Theater

17586
Client, Executive Director of a theatre promotion media company, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to draft a demand letter, and to dissolve a possible partnership while protecting him from liability and to recover unpaid wages.

17514
Client, a not-for-profit circus organization, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to resolve a dispute with a member of the circus group who has been removed for alleged improper conduct.

Visual Arts

17750 
Client, a visual artist, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to help him obtain a copy of video files featuring both him and his artwork.

17730
Client, a sculptor, seeks assistance with pursuing claims against a performance company for their failure to attribute the creation of an artwork to Client, and with pursuing a world-renowned artist for wrongfully claiming copyright in the work.

17592
Client, a professional realist painter, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to represent her in an ongoing lawsuit concerning a website that falsely attributes a painting to the client (Southern District of New York).

Music

17738 
Client, a not-for-profit woodwind quintet, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to remove a member of the group.

Visual Arts

17657 – On Review
Clients, the owners and founders of a community arts center, seek assistance with forming a not-for-profit organization, applying for tax-exempt status, and drafting foundational documents.

17734 
Client, a jewelry designer, seeks assistance evaluating the patentability of a jewelry closure invention, and applying for a patent, if appropriate.

Music

17784 – NEW CASE
Client, a musical artist who has worked under a stage name for more than 10 years, seeks assistance resolving a trademark dispute with another performer who recently began using a phonetically identical name.

17638 – LOW BONO REFERRAL
Client, the founder of a music ensemble that performs Baroque music, seeks assistance obtaining a trademark for the ensemble’s name.

Photography

17618 – On Review
Client, an artist with a catalog of photographic, musical and performative works, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to update her will and living will, and advise on forming a trust to manage her creative works upon her death.

Visual Arts

17778
Client, a classical music artist who has recently composed an array of songs, seeks advice on estate planning for the disposition of his real and personal property.

17777
Client, a New Jersey artist whose husband was also a successful visual artist, seeks assistance setting up a will, living will, and healthcare proxy to ensure that her work and her husband’s work is cared for upon her death.

17774 – On Review
Client, a multimedia installation artist, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to advise on estate planning, and to assist in establishing a trust, drafting a new will, and drafting a living will.

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