Arts & Entertainment Pro Bono Cases

Last Updated: Monday, June 17, 2024

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 VLA 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.


CONTRACT

Music

9750 – On Review
Client, a director and producer of theatrical productions, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to review an agreement between Client and a collaborating playwright and to draft a revision for use with future collaborators.

Performance

11674
Client, a model, seeks the assistance of a German lawyer to negotiate an exclusive representation agreement with a German management agency.

Photography

11158 – On Review
Clients, two photographers, seek a volunteer attorney to negotiate agreements with a creative management agency and a major visual media company.


COPYRIGHT

Literary

12092 – NEW CASE
Client, an art historian, seeks a detailed fair use analysis of the photographs of artwork used in her unpublished manuscript.

Music

12907 – NEW CASE
Client, a composer, seeks a volunteer attorney to conduct a fair use analysis of Client’s composition, and to negotiate with the composer’s estate for usage rights.

12740
Client, a singer-songwriter, seeks a volunteer attorney to resolve a dispute with a musician who created a remix version of Client’s original song without Client’s permission.

12704
Client, a comedian with a background in writing, seeks assistance with assessing the risk associated with performing a modified version of a popular song.

12697 – On Review
Client, a musician, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to negotiate a license for the use of a song.

12034
Client, a musician, seeks assistance with recovering royalties and stopping the unauthorized distribution of his song.

11547
Client, a singer-songwriter, seeks assistance with negotiating credit for musical and visual work used by a major record label.

Theatre

12796 – On Review
Client, a playwright, seeks a volunteer attorney to review a Shakespearean adaptation of a well-known screenplay to determine the level of risk Client faces if they don’t license the underlying work.


DISPUTES

Digital Art

1239
Client, an independent filmmaker, actor, and writer, seeks assistance with recovering photographs donated to a library and to make a donation of belongings to a personal archive at the library.

Film/TV

11106 – On Review
Client, a television writer and producer, seeks a volunteer attorney to send a demand letter to the producer of a television show that allegedly infringes on Client’s copyright.

10011 – On Review
Client, an independent film and television production company, seeks assistance with claiming credit and compensation for the development and pitch of a television project.

1500
Client, a film production company, seeks representation in a contract dispute pending in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois, related to a default on a loan for a film project.

Literary

11902
Client, an independent writing coach, seeks assistance with responding to cease and desist letter she received from her previous employer alleging that she has violated a non-compete agreement.

11823 – NEW CASE
Client, a producer and creative director who collaborated on a theatrical work, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to resolve an ongoing dispute with his collaborator over intellectual property ownership.

11622
Client, an author, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to claim damages for lost book sales.

Multidisciplinary

10300
Client, a comic book writer, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to request an accounting and to assist with recovering any royalties owed.

Music

12842 – NEW CASE
Client, a wedding singer, seeks assistance with demanding payment from a former band for the unauthorized continued use of Client’s image in their promotional video.

12568
Client, a musician, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to represent him in a breach of contract claim pending in the Supreme Court of New York. Client also seeks assistance with terminating a recording contract with a record label.

12096
Client, a songwriter, seeks assistance with recovering payment for a musical catalog that was sold and assigned to an LLC.

11994
Client, a singer and composer, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to resolve a dispute regarding royalties and copyright ownership. A Spanish speaking attorney is preferred.

Other

11698
Client, the owner of a textile retail business, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to resolve a payment dispute with a former business owner.

Performing Arts

12587
Client, a multimedia production firm, seeks a volunteer attorney to represent them in a nonpayment suit filed against them in the Civil Court of the City of New York.

Photography

12841
Client, a photographer, seeks a volunteer attorney to draft a termination letter to Client’s former attorney and resolve any outstanding dispute of fees charged.

11422
Client, a product photographer, seeks representation in a breach of contract suit pending in Supreme Court of the State of New York. Client also seeks assistance with possibly filing a separate claim in federal court for copyright infringement.

10363 – On Review
Client, the spouse of a deceased photographer, seeks assistance with the removal of images from an online archive.

Theater

11554
Client, a playwright who served as the assistant director of a preschool, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to recover outstanding payment from his former employer.

11019
Client, the author of a children’s musical, seeks assistance with resolving a dispute with a licensee of his musical.

Visual Arts

12944 – NEW CASE
Client, a visual arts organization, seeks a volunteer attorney to draft a cease and desist letter to a former member of the organization regarding defamatory remarks made about the organization.

12741
Client, a painter, seeks a volunteer attorney to negotiate the return of artwork from a company that is holding Client’s paintings beyond the agreed consignment period.

12544
Client, the widow of an artist, seeks assistance with recovering payment for sales of her husband’s artwork.

12477
Client, a visual artist in residence at a private school of theology, seeks assistance with resolving a dispute about issues with her artist residency with the school.

12235
Client, a painter, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to have a blog post removed from a third party website that is damaging Client’s art business.

11984
Client, a visual artist located in New York, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney in California to draft a demand letter and manage an ongoing dispute with a Los Angeles art gallery that damaged Client’s artwork by improper shipment.

11709 – On Review
Client, a visual artist, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to draft a response letter to an art gallery which has terminated its relationship with Client.

11012
Client, a sculptor, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to recover a rental payment from a landlord, along with damages for the destruction of her artwork.


EMPLOYMENT

No cases available


IMMIGRATION

No cases available


NON-PROFIT

Theatre

10992
Client, a non-profit organization registered in Pennsylvania, seeks assistance with dissolving the entity and forming a new non-profit organization in New York or, in the alternative, filing as a foreign entity doing business in New York.


PATENTS

Other

12288 – NEW CASE – On Review
Client seeks assistance with responding to a USPTO Final Office Action related to a solar panel invention. Client must file a response by July 25, 2024, and can request an extension to October 25, 2024.


TRADEMARK

Dance

11963 – NEW CASE – On Review
Client, a dancer who has created an app to connect dancers with potential jobs, seeks a volunteer attorney to conduct a trademark search for the name of the app.

Multidisciplinary

13059 – On Review
Client, two entertainment industry professionals/spouses, seek a volunteer attorney to assist them in registering trademarks for their company.


WILLS, TRUSTS, AND ESTATES

Literary

11636 
Client, the son of an actress and writer, seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to recover his mother’s property from the estate of the executor of her will.

10774 
Client seeks a trust and estates attorney to assist with the administration of the estate of an author who died intestate in Rockland County.

Mixed

10506
Client, the administrator of her deceased husband’s estate, seeks a volunteer attorney to remove Client as the administrator and appoint her children as co-administrators.

1513
Client, a mixed media artist with a focus on photography, seeks assistance with creating a trust and drafting a will, living will, power of attorney, healthcare proxy, and other relevant documents.

Music

12223
Client, a well-respected jazz pianist, seeks assistance with forming a revocable trust, a living will, and revising his existing will.

Visual Arts

11851
Client, a painter who has had a long career as a visual artist, seeks assistance with drafting a will, health care proxy, living will and power of attorney.

11378 
Client, a visual artist, seeks assistance with a claim against the estate of a philanthropist to whom he lent funds for the purposes of retaining and renovating properties to create an arts colony.

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