|Case #||Legal Category||Arts Category||Client Type||Description||Training Materials||Law Library|
|23-1038||Trademark Protection, Copyright Protection/Licensing||Visual Art||Pro Bono|
|23-0885||Trademark Protection, Copyright Protection/Licensing||Film/TV||Pro Bono|
23-0885 Filmmaker is developing a docuseries about African nations and needs counsel to assist with content clearance and establishing chain of title.
|23-1081||Copyright Infringement, Copyright Protection/Licensing||Film/TV, Music||Pro Bono|
23-1081 Filmmaker is producing a documentary about a group of comedy musicians that publishes parodies of popular songs. Filmmakers wants to use some of these songs in the film, and needs counsel to advise on whether he needs permission from the original artists parodied by the comedy musicians.
|23-1105||Other||Visual Art||Pro Bono|
23-1105 Nonprofit art studio and gallery that supports Chicago visual artists living with disabilities needs counsel to prepare a sexual harassment policy.
|23-1068||Contracts||Literature, Visual Art||Pro Bono|
23-1068 Author has written a book that she is interested in publishing with a hybrid publisher. Publisher has offered Author a contract. Author needs counsel to help review the agreement.
23-1074 Local band has been offered a recording contract by a start-up record label. They need counsel to review and revise the agreement.
|23-0967||Personal Injury/Damage to Property||Visual Art||Pro Bono|
23-0967 Visual artist rented a storage locker to store paintings. A fire occurred in the building, which eventually caused water to seep into the unit. Artist was not notified of the fire for almost a month, and the paintings were damaged by the water issue as a result. Artist's homeowner's insurance deems the damage to the paintings to be a business loss. Artist needs counsel to help evaluate a claim to recover losses from the storage facility.
|23-1102||Contracts, Disputes||Music, Performance Art||Pro Bono|
23-1102 Opera performer was contracted as an artist-in-residence of an opera company to develop a series of creative projects. Agreement expired in June 2023, and the opera company indicated to the performer that they planned to renew the agreement. Performer continued to work on planning and preparation for the series, in communication with the opera company, for a period of several months before the opera company notified her that they would not be continuing the program. Performer needs counsel to help evaluate a claim for compensation or other appropriate recourse.
|22-1111||Contracts, Disputes, Copyright Protection/Licensing||Literature||Pro Bono|
22-1111 Author hired an editor to help edit and publish her first book. Editor failed to appropriately proof-read the manuscript, and the book was published in a state that the author believes to constitute a breach of contract. Author needs counsel to help evaluate her options for recourse.
|23-0302||Copyright Infringement, Disputes||Film/TV||Pro Bono|
23-0302 Filmmaker has been distributing his film online through a large DIY distributor for nearly a decade. Recently, the filmmaker lost access to his account due to a two-factor authentication issue, and as a result, the filmmaker has not received the royalties that he is due for the last several months. Filmmaker needs counsel to help resolve the issue and recover the relevant royalties.
|23-0935||Landlord-Tenant||Performance Art, Visual Art||Pro Bono|
23-0935 Visual arts nonprofit rents a storefront exhibition space. The building is in the process of being sold, and the buyer, a local educational institution, wants all tenants out by a date prior to the end of the nonprofit's lease. The current landlord has offered a small sum to terminate the lease early. Nonprofit needs counsel to evaluate their rights and help negotiate with the current landlord.
|23-1127||Business Startup/Corporate, Disputes||Music||Pro Bono|
23-1127 Musician operates a recording studio as a sole proprietorship. During the start-up phase of the business, a family member purchased several pieces of equipment and contributed them to the recording studio. There is no formal agreement. Over the last few years, Musician has sold these pieces of equipment to make ends meet. Family member recently discovered the sale and is demanding return of the equipment or repayment. Musician needs counsel to help evaluate his exposure.
|23-1055||Commercial Litigation, Copyright Protection/Licensing||Arts Education, Other, Visual Art||Pro Bono|
23-1055 Visual artist created a series of drawing lesson videos in conjunction with a business venture organized as an LLC. Visual artist's former business partner is claiming that these videos are joint works or property of the LLC and refuses to allow the LLC to dissolve. Visual artist filed a declaratory judgement suit to confirm her ownership of the video content. There are currently pending motions for summary judgement. Visual artist has pro bono counsel, but due to bandwidth issues, is seeking co-counsel to assist with the declaratory judgement suit.
|23-0532||Disputes||Literature, Other||Pro Bono|
23-0532 Client is the former employee of a public library. During her employment, she developed a number of educational tools for dealing with trauma. Since the end of her employment with the library, a former colleague has received significant national recognition for these tools as well as opportunity for financial benefit, and Client believes she has not be credited appropriately. She needs counsel to help evaluate her options for legal recourse.
23-1087 Ceramics artist was commissioned to create a piece. The firing process caused a hairline crack in base of the completed work, which is not visible when the piece is on display. The commissioning party paid upfront, and is now demanding a full refund and refusing to accept the piece. There was no formal contract. Artist needs counsel to evaluate her exposure, rights, and responsibilities.
|23-0629||Personal Injury/Damage to Property||Music||Pro Bono|
23-0629 Jazz musician's principal instrument was damaged by a patron of a venue at which they were performing. The patron verbally committed to paying for the damage, but has failed to respond to the musician's subsequent outreach. Musician needs counsel to help evaluate her options and assist with recovery of the repair costs.
23-0716 Designer created a large collection of greeting cards and was storing them in a local storage locker. Due to holes in the roof of the storage facility, the unit flooded and the cards were ruined. The storage facility is disclaiming responsibility, and the designer's homeowner's insurer states that the loss is not covered. Designer needs counsel to evaluate their rights and options under the agreement with the storage facility and her homeowner's policy.
23-1084 Founder and Artistic Director of a nonprofit dance company has become the subject of anonymous, disparaging, and untrue statements made via social media and email correspondence. They need counsel to review their planned public response to the statements, help evaluate a claim for defamation, and draft a cease-and-desist letter.
|23-0434||Rights of Privacy and Publicity, Disputes||Theater||Pro Bono|
23-0434 Producer of a holiday-themed theatrical production has been notified a choreographer that worked on an early version of the production has been making potentially defamatory comments on social media. They need counsel to help evaluate a claim for defamation and assist with the preparation of a cease and desist letter.
23-0535 Actor was mentioned in a testimonial piece published by an online publication and needs counsel to help evaluate a claim for defamation.
|23-0824||Personal Injury/Damage to Property||Photography, Visual Art||Pro Bono|
23-0824 Fine art photographer retired from her arts practice in 2016, and shortly after rented a storage locker to store some of her framed art prints. In late 2022, an overhead pipe burst that flooded the photographer's storage unit and destroyed the artwork. Her insurance provider is refusing to cover the replacement costs of the photos. Photographer needs counsel to evaluate a claim for reimbursement and, if appropriate, help negotiate with the insurance provider.
23-0480 Visual artist recently received a permanent account suspension from a well-known e-commerce site. They need counsel to communicate with the site to determine whether this suspension can be reversed.
|23-1027||Employment||Arts Education, Visual Art||Pro Bono|
23-1027 Sculptor was recently hired to teach visual arts courses at a small private university. They are transgender, and the HR department at the school insists on using their deadname in official directories and email addresses. A student discovered Sculptor's deadname because of this and the student has begun deadnaming and misgendering Sculptor, as well as making transphobic comments. Sculptor has begun Title IX proceedings and needs counsel to help evaluate their claim and counsel them through the process.
|23-0957||Contracts, Other||Arts Education, Music, Theater||Pro Bono|
23-0957 Arts nonprofit received a substantial grant from a state agency. The agency has engaged an accounting firm to assist with compliance audits regarding use of grant funds. Due to turnover with accountants and staff, the nonprofit is having trouble producing the required documentation and needs counsel to evaluate exposure and, if appropriate, negotiate with the accounting firm.
|22-1135||Personal Injury/Damage to Property||Film/TV||Pro Bono|
22-1135 Videographer was working a job for a client when his equipment was stolen from the area in which he was directed to store it. Videographer's client is unwilling to reimburse him for the loss. Videographer needs counsel to help evaluate a claim for reimbursement.
|23-0650||Disputes, Personal Injury/Damage to Property||Visual Art||Paying|
23-0650 Visual artist entered into an arrangement with a local science museum to display several of her works. There is no formal exhibition agreement. Recently, one of the works was stolen from the museum. The museum refuses to compensate the artist for the loss of her work. Artist needs help evaluating her options for recourse and communicating with the museum.
|23-0652||Disputes||Visual Art||Pro Bono|
23-0652 Visual artist and professor recently received a permanent account suspension from a prominent online services company. They need counsel to communicate with the site to determine whether this suspension can be reversed.
|23-0099||Disputes||Dance, Performance Art||Pro Bono|
23-0099 Choreographer and former plaintiff in unsuccessful civil rights arbitration against former employer needs advice in defending against order to pay award of costs assessed by arbitrator.
|23-0907||Copyright Infringement, Disputes||Photography, Visual Art||Pro Bono|
23-0907 Photographer entered into an oral agreement with a gallery to exhibit a collection of photographs. In preparation for the show, the gallery owner made unauthorized reproductions of the photographer's work for display in the show and demanded reimbursement from the photographer. Photographer needs counsel to help recover the unauthorized reproductions, as well as costs.
|23-0779||Contracts, Disputes||Dance, Music||Pro Bono|
23-0779 Founder and co-owner of a local nightclub sold a majority of his stake in the company several years ago. As part of this agreement, the new majority owner agreed to terms requiring return of the vintage speaker system to the founder. Majority owner recently replaced the speakers, and allowed a third party to remove the speakers from the club. The third party refuses to return the speakers to the founder. Founder needs counsel to help evaluate their options and assist with recovery of the speakers.
|23-1040||Contracts, Other||Arts Education, Music, Theater||Paying|
23-1040 Arts startup obtained a bridge loan and several extensions from a private lender throughout the pandemic. They believe that the lender is not appropriately reporting the extension fees on the 1098 forms they have provided to the startup. They need counsel to review the circumstances and advise as to the proper tax treatment of these extension fees for the bridge loan.
23-1021 Writer published two books of poetry with a self-publishing company. He is unhappy with the arrangement, and is interested in terminating the agreement to distribute his works via another method. He needs counsel to assist with termination of the contract.
|23-0906||Trademark Protection||Music||Pro Bono|
23-0906 Small piano wholesaler holds a trademark that is used to identify their pianos, and a competitor recently filed a Petition to Cancel the mark with the USPTO. They need counsel to represent them in the proceedings.
23-0923 Nonprofit dance company that currently engages all dancers as independent contractors is interested in contributing to dancers' individual retirement accounts. They need counsel to advise as to how this might be accomplished.
|23-1022||Employment||Visual Art||Pro Bono|
23-1022 Visual artist is regularly hired by a company that produces pop-up events to fabricate installation pieces for their events. He is currently classified as an independent contractor, but some of the requirements of the hiring party lead him to believe that he might be better classified as an employee. Artist needs counsel to help evaluate his worker classification and advise as to his options moving forward.
23-0540 Writer is attempting to prepare a will using an online legal services platform and needs counsel to review the language around control of his creative assets, permissions, and royalties.
|23-0462||Employment, Visa and Immigration||Visual Art||Pro Bono|
23-0462 Visual artist and arts educator from Peru is currently on an OPT visa that expires in December 2023. They need counsel to help evaluate their options and advise on the process of obtaining a new visa
23-0649 Nonprofit theater is renovating their new space and needs counsel to assist with a zoning change so that the organization can obtain the appropriate business and liquor licenses.