Sample Agreements
Band Partnership Deed

This sample agreement outlines the formalisation of a pre-existing band or performers wishing to join together to form a band.

Band Partnership Letter agreement

This sample Band Partnership Letter Agreement should be used when members of a band want to record how their band will operate as between the various members.

This sample agreement includes the most common terms which the parties need to consider and agree to.

Contractor Performers Agreement - under review!

Please note this contract template is currently under review. This sample agreement should be used when a performer is being contracted by someone else to perform in a production. If the performer is being engaged as an employee rather than a contractor, Arts Law's Employment Agreement for Performers is more appropriate.

Copyright Licensing Agreement

This sample Copyright Licensing Agreement should be used when a person who owns the copyright in creative content wishes to give permission to another person to use their content (whether a visual artwork, text, music, film or other content) in a particular way.

Debt recovery - Letter of Demand

If you are owed money and it hasn't been paid, the first step is to send a letter of demand. This is a template which you can adapt.

Direct Licensing Guidelines (Public Performance and Transmission Rights)

These sample guidelines have been developed to assist small record companies and independent artists that are Phonographic Performance Company of Australia (PPCA) licensors to meet the requirement that they have direct licensing guidelines (policies). The guidelines deal only with direct licensing of public performance and transmission rights in a sound recording or music video. For more information on PPCA's requirement in relation to direct licensing guideline see Arts Law’s information sheet on Direct licensing guidelines: sound recording

 
Music Commission Agreement for Games

This sample Music Commission Agreement for Games should be used when a game developer wants a composer, musician or band either to create original music for use in the developer’s game or to adapt existing music into a new composition or arrangement.

Music Commission for Film

This sample agreement covers the fundamentals of how a producer commissions a screen composer to create an original score for a film or video.

Music Compilation Licence for Community Projects

This sample agreement outlines the arrangement between a community or a non-profit organisation and an unsigned artist in which the artist records songs for the first time for inclusion on a compilation album.

Music Essentials Pack

A pack of discounted, tailored contract templates to make sure you're protecting all your rights as a musician.

Music Licence for Film

This sample agreement is used when a producer wants to synchronise existing music and an existing master tape of the music to a soundtrack for a video or film. It is appropriate when the composer of the music owns the copyright in both the music and lyrics.

Music Licence for Games

This sample Music Licence for Games (often referred to as a synchronisation licence or master licence) is for use where a game developer wants to synchronise existing music and an existing master recording of the music to a soundtrack for a game. It is appropriate when the composer of the music owns the copyright in both the music (and lyrics) and the sound recording.

Music Studio Recording Agreement for Unsigned Artists

This sample agreement should be used when an unsigned artist is negotiating a booking with a recording studio. It can be used as a starting point for drafting an agreement or as a checklist to compare to the terms offered by the studio.

One-off Performance Partnership Deed

This sample deed should be used when a group of performers (dancers) want to form a partnership for the purpose of putting on a one-off show/project/performance.

Performer’s Ongoing Partnership Deed

A deed for a group of performers who want to form a partnership for the purpose of putting on more than one show/project/performance on an ongoing basis.

Performer’s Release – other than music

This sample agreement should be used to ensure that the recipient of the release, for example a producer, is allowed to record and use the performance. It also covers the performer's copyright and moral rights.

Performer’s Release – Session Musician

This sample Session Musician’s Release (the Release) should be used when a musician is being hired by a third party to perform a musical work as part of a recorded music session.

Sample Website Terms of Use

These sample Website Terms of Use are for use on websites either with a blog (i.e. a public "discussion board" that allows users to post their comments for others to read and comment on) or a more traditional website without a blog.

Sponsorship Agreement

This sample agreement should be used by artists or arts organisations when obtaining sponsorship for a particular event or activity, such as a festival, performance or exhibition.

Venue Hire Agreement

This sample agreement can be used for hiring a place/space for short period of time.

Workshop Participation Deed

This sample WORKSHOP PARTICIPATION DEED should be used when a person takes part in a workshop in which they will create copyright material, for example by writing text, composing music, creating new dance movement or coming up with new lines for a play, and possibly performs the material created.

Info Sheets
Agency agreements

Actors, musicians and bands often appoint agents or managers to act on their behalf. Visual artists often have a dealer who represents them. The manager or agent can enter into contracts that are binding on the person who appointed them (the principal). There are specific legal rules which apply to these agency relationships.

This information sheet explains what an agency is, how it is created, the authority granted to an agent, an agent's obligations, and the important terms of agency agreements. It also deals with any state legislation that applies to agents, managers and venue consultants in the entertainment industry. Bands and visual artists should also read the “Music management checklist” and “Artist-gallery checklist”.

Auspice Agreements

When a group of individuals (the Group) form to carry out a ‘one-off’ project (such as an exhibition, performance or show) they may not want to create a formal legal entity just for that project (such as an incorporated association, co-operative, company limited by shares or a company limited by guarantee).

Australian Consumer Law and Creators

An artists has rights which are enforceable under law, and they also have duties to other people. This information sheet explains what ‘liability’ means under the Australian Consumer Law and covers some of the legal duties and obligations that are relevant to artists and creators.

Children in the creative process (ACT)

When artists work with children, whether as part of a community project or an educational workshop, or where children are actors, performers or models, specific legal obligations and duties arise.

This information sheet outlines the legal issues artists or arts organisations in the Australian Capital Territory should consider when they contemplate working with or using children in any part of the creative or artistic process. It covers the duties of employers and the requirements for police and working with children checks.

It also summarises ACT laws relating to child pornography and obscenity.

National laws as well as State and Territory laws are relevant. It is important to read this information sheet in conjunction with the information sheet Children in the creative process – Australia.

Children in the creative process (Australia)

Federal, State and Territory laws all impact on how an artist works with children as part of the creative or artistic process. This information sheet looks at Australia’s national laws relevant to working with children including the censorship regime related to the classification of films, computer games and other publications.

This information sheet must be read together with the information sheet that is specific to the state or territory in which the artist is working.

Children in the creative process (NSW)

When artists work with children, whether as part of a community project or an educational workshop, or where children are actors, performers or models, specific legal obligations and duties arise.

This information sheet outlines the legal issues artists or arts organisations in New South Wales should consider when they contemplate working with or using children in any part of the creative or artistic process. It covers the duties of employers and the requirements for police and working with children checks.

It also summarises NSW laws relating to child pornography and obscenity.

National laws as well as State and Territory laws are relevant. It is important to read this information sheet in conjunction with the information sheet Children in the creative process – Australia.

Children in the creative process (NT)

When artists work with children, whether as part of a community project or an educational workshop, or where children are actors, performers or models, specific legal obligations and duties arise.

This information sheet outlines the legal issues artists or arts organisations in the Northern Territory should consider when they contemplate working with or using children in any part of the creative or artistic process. It covers the duties of employers and the requirements for police and working with children checks.

It also summarises NT laws relating to child pornography and obscenity.

National laws as well as State and Territory laws are relevant. It is important to read this information sheet in conjunction with the information sheet Children in the creative process – Australia.

Children in the creative process (QLD)

When artists work with children, whether as part of a community project or an educational workshop, or where children are actors, performers or models, specific legal obligations and duties arise.

This information sheet outlines the legal issues artists or arts organisations in Queensland should consider when they contemplate working with or using children in any part of the creative or artistic process. It covers the duties of employers and the requirements for police and working with children checks.

It also summarises QLD laws relating to child pornography and obscenity.

National laws as well as State and Territory laws are relevant. It is important to read this information sheet in conjunction with the information sheet Children in the creative process – Australia.

Children in the creative process (SA)

When artists work with children, whether as part of a community project or an educational workshop, or where children are actors, performers or models, specific legal obligations and duties arise.

This information sheet outlines the legal issues artists or arts organisations in South Australia should consider when they contemplate working with or using children in any part of the creative or artistic process. It covers the duties of employers and the requirements for police and working with children checks.

It also summarises SA laws relating to child pornography and obscenity.

National laws as well as State and Territory laws are relevant. This information sheet must be read in conjunction with the general information sheet Children in the creative process – Australia since that fact sheet explains how the various federal laws operate. This information sheet explains how the South Australia laws relate to you as an artist working with children. It includes information about the employment of children, background checks, pornography and obscenity offences and the application of classification legislation in South Australia.

Children in the creative process (TAS)

When artists work with children, whether as part of a community project or an educational workshop, or where children are actors, performers or models, specific legal obligations and duties arise.

This information sheet outlines the legal issues artists or arts organisations in Tasmania should consider when they contemplate working with or using children in any part of the creative or artistic process. It covers the duties of employers and the requirements for police and working with children checks.

It also summarises TAS laws relating to child pornography and obscenity.

National laws as well as State and Territory laws are relevant. It is important to read this information sheet in conjunction with the information sheet Children in the creative process – Australia.

Children in the creative process (VIC)

When artists work with children, whether as part of a community project or an educational workshop, or where children are actors, performers or models, specific legal obligations and duties arise.

This information sheet outlines the legal issues artists or arts organisations in Victoria should consider when they contemplate working with or using children in any part of the creative or artistic process. It covers the duties of employers and the requirements for police and working with children checks.

It also summarises VIC laws relating to child pornography and obscenity.

National laws as well as State and Territory laws are relevant. It is important to read this information sheet in conjunction with the information sheet Children in the creative process – Australia.

Children in the creative process (WA)

When artists work with children, whether as part of a community project or an educational workshop, or where children are actors, performers or models, specific legal obligations and duties arise.

This information sheet outlines the legal issues artists or arts organisations in Western Australia should consider when they contemplate working with or using children in any part of the creative or artistic process. It covers the duties of employers and the requirements for police and working with children checks.

It also summarises WA laws relating to child pornography and obscenity.

National laws as well as State and Territory laws are relevant. It is important to read this information sheet in conjunction with the information sheet Children in the creative process – Australia.

Classification and censorship

Artists should be aware that they might be required to have their works classified. Whether an artist has an obligation to have a particular work classified depends on a number of factors, including the medium of the work, its content and how it is being used.

This Information sheet explains the different classification systems that apply to different types of creative works including films, computer games, publications and artworks as well as the available exemptions such as for festivals. This scheme is administered by the Classification Board. This information sheet also discusses the regulation of content for television, radio and internet by the Australian Communications and Media Authority as well as the voluntary labelling guidelines for audio tapes, records and CDs that have been developed by the Australian Record Industry Association (ARIA) and the Australian Music Retailers' Association (AMRA).

Competition conditions

This information sheet considers some issues you should consider before entering creative competitions.

Contracts: A glossary of jargon

This information sheet contains a list of some of the more common legal terms that you might come across in negotiations as well as words and expressions that may appear in an agreement. 

Contracts: An Introduction

Contracts can be confusing to get your head around. This information sheet is an introduction to contract basics. 

Copyright

Copyright provides a way for artists to protect and monetise their creativity. Knowing how to license copyright and earn a royalty gives artists a way to make money from their work. This information sheet will introduce you to some of the copyright basics.

Copyright Collecting Societies

Collecting societies collect royalties on behalf of their members. Members are artists, authors, musicians and other owners of copyright in works (such as lyrics, visual art and literature) or other copyright material (such as sound recordings, films, and television broadcasts). 

Copyright Infringement

Learn what copyright infringement looks like and what steps you can take if you think you're copyright has been infringed.

Creative Commons

Creative Commons (CC) is a non-profit organisation which provides a set of free, generic licences which creators of intellectual property can use to distribute their work to the public digitally. It was launched in the United States in 2001 founded on the concept that people can contribute to a shared 'commons' of creative works by effectively giving up certain rights in a copyright work and allowing others freely to use, adapt, modify and distribute this work.

Debt recovery – small claims procedure (NT)

An introduction into how one can go about chasing payment that is owning to them in the Northern Territory. It provides clarification on the small claims procedure in the Northern Territory.

Debt recovery – small claims procedure (QLD)

This information sheet provides an introduction into about how one can chase outstanding payment in Queensland. It provides clarification on the small claims procedure in Queensland.

Debt recovery – small claims procedure (WA)

This information sheet provides an introduction into about how one can chase outstanding payment in Western Australia. It provides clarification on the small claims procedure in Western Australia.

Defamation Law

Artists often have questions about whether their work defames someone. This information sheet describes the law of defamation (sometimes called libel or slander) and explains how to minimise the risk of defamation and what the defences are if you are threatened with a defamation action. 

Direct Licensing Guidelines

This information sheet is for small Australian record companies and independent artists that have an input agreement with the Phonographic Performance Company of Australia (PPCA). All record companies and independent artists that are PPCA licensors must have direct licensing guidelines that outline the circumstances in which they may directly licence public performance and transmission rights for their sound recordings. This information sheet includes sample Direct Licensing Guidelines. All PPCA licensors are entitled to free legal advice from Arts Law about their guidelines and input agreements. For advice, lodge a query here.

Disclaimers, exclusion clauses and risk warnings

This information explains the difference between a disclaimer and an exclusion clause in a contract and the circumstances when a risk warning should be used. It explains when you should use them, what they mean and the effectiveness of such clauses or statements in limit liability for injury, loss or damage. This information sheet should be read in conjunction with our insurance and liability information sheet.

Employment Issues (NSW)

This information sheet provides information about employment law in NSW for employees, contractors and volunteers, including employers’ legal obligations under the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth). 

Freedom of expression

The Australian Constitution does not expressly protect the freedom of expression and there are also limitations that can inhibit creative freedom in some situations, including defamation, anti-vilification, classification and censorship laws and the treason and urging violence offences. 

Liability and insurance

Accidents can happen when you operate a business or conduct your creative activity. It is important you understand your ‘liability’ or legal responsibility to compensate for damage or injury to people and property. This information sheet explains liability, risk management  and insurance. 

Moral rights

Moral rights protect the personal relationship between a creator and their work even if the creator no longer owns the work, or the copyright in the work. Moral rights concern the creator’s right to be properly attributed or credited, and the protection of their work from derogatory treatment. 

Music Copyright and Publishing for Bands and Recording Artists

Composers, lyricists, independent recording artists and bands that own the copyright in their music can derive income through the licensing and performance of their compositions and sound recordings. This information sheet explains music copyright and royalties, the role of collecting societies such as APRA/AMCOS and PPCA, and music publishing. Sample agreements that may be relevant include Music Recording agreements guide, Music Studio Recording Agreement for Unsigned Artists and Session Musician’s release

Musicians and composers: useful resources

This information sheet lists resources, including sample agreements, which musicians, composers, songwriters and bands may find useful. It includes a brief description of the different music copyright collecting societies including APRA|AMCOS and PPCA,  the resources available on the website of the Arts Law Centre of Australia and relevant national and state music organisations.

Patents

Patents are a way of protecting inventions. If you have created a useful product or process, you may be entitled to register a patent. This information sheet provides a description of the types of inventions eligible for patent protection. It also provides an outline of how to apply and who can apply for a patent, as well as information on business method patents.

Performers’ rights

Actors, circus performers, musicians, dancers and other live performers may have performers’ rights in their performances, read on to learn more about these rights.

Performers’ Rights in Music (AITB)

Performers such as actors, conductors, singers and musicians have rights which are separate from the rights of the authors, filmmakers, composers and songwriters who create the works that are performed. In this information sheet, we discuss the rights of musical performers that recognise the creative connection between musicians and the music they perform – whether or not it is music and songs which they wrote themselves.  

Protecting your ideas

How to protect ideas and an outline of confidentiality law. This information sheet includes a sample confidentiality agreement.

Public Art - Design and Commissioning

Public art commissions create exciting opportunities for artists, allow Australians to enjoy aesthetically beautiful environments, and stimulate community engagement with the arts. Learn how to get the most benefit to yourself as an artist, your council and your community.

Social Media for Artists

The Internet provides artists with a platform to access a worldwide audience for their work.  Social media, in particular, is a ready-made do-it-yourself mechanism for distributing, promoting, exhibiting and even selling creative content whether music, visual art, film, literature or other multi-platform art forms. This information sheet addresses the legal issues that can arise for artists using social media to publish their work.

Story Telling - Legal Issues (Artists in the Black Resource)

The art of oral story telling is a fluid art form, and legal issues including copyright, moral Rights and Indigenous Cultural Intellectual Property can arise. Read on to learn more about protecting your rights in this form of story telling.

Superannuation and contract for services

This information sheet provides a summary of, and guide to, the superannuation guarantee charge, including the different aspects of superannuation and the responsibilities of employers, employees and self employed workers.

Takedown Notice - Copyright

Learn about the purpose of a ‘takedown notice’. It includes the procedure to follow if you believe a website has breached your intellectual property rights and you want the infringing material to be taken down.

Trade marks

An explanation of who can apply for a trade mark, how to register a trade mark, and what can be registered as a trade mark. An overview of the registration process, reasons why a application may be refused and preventing others to use your trade mark.

Website development

This information sheet covers the most important issues that a person should consider and possibly address in a contract when engaging a website developer to create a website.

Articles
360 Degree Record Deals

In the face of declining record sales, record companies are presenting some artists with 360 degree deals, enabling the record company to share in revenue traditionally only collected by artists. This article looks at the arguments for and against these deals and what artists should consider before signing them.

A Quick Introduction to Trademarks

The Arts Law Centre of Australia recently secured the registration of its trade marks, namely 'ARTS LAW CENTRE OF AUSTRALIA', 'ART + LAW' and 'ART + LAW' together with its logo. This article highlights the importance of securing protection of brands for any business and outlines the process of registering a trade mark, which is not necessarily a straight forward process.

Better Ask a Lawyer: q&a with Michael Easton

Michael’s a lawyer with over 17 years experience in media, entertainment, commercial and intellectual property law. He previously worked for the ABC and now runs his own specialist practice. 

Bush Band Business 2012

In 2012, Artists in the Black (AITB) was invited again by Music NT to participate in Bush Bands Business (BBBiz).  Held at the breathtaking Ross River Resort, Bush Bands Business is the professional development and mentoring program for the eight Indigenous bush bands chosen to perform at the Bash in Alice Springs during the annual Desert Festival.

Changes for PPCA licensors

Serena Armstrong explains some changes to PPCA agreements and sets out the new Arts Law resources available to help people understand and comply with the changes.

Choosing an Online Sales Service

The emergence of digital distribution platforms gives musicians new options when it comes to getting their music to an audience. Here, we compare  some of the offerings available.

Code of Conduct for Copyright Collecting Societies

Commencing July 2002, the organisations that collect licences on behalf of copyright owners for various uses of copyright work in Australia adopted a code of conduct, called the Code of Conduct for Copyright Collecting Societies (“the Code”).

Digital rights – American labels step up actions against online music companies

In the last year, a number of American-based online music businesses have taken advantage of new software, offering consumers faster access to streamed and downloaded music online. Two actions for copyright infringement have been brought against MP3.com, the most significant by RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) in relation to their new my.mp3.com account service which offers members two new means of music delivery.

Downloading Is Out; Streaming Is In

It’s a strange thought for most that that there are music consumers out there right now who have never purchased a physical album, whether it is the ever-durable CD, the stylish vinyl record or the “sorry, my Datsun only has a tape-deck” cassette.

Four things I wish I’d asked a lawyer… before I formed my band

Ivan Vizintin was Arts Law’s paralegal in 2015, responsible for administering legal queries from artists and arts organisations. He’s also a professional musician. Here, Ivan and Arts Law’s Senior Solicitor, Morris Averill, discuss the issues he wish he’d known about when he was first starting out. 

Getting Mobile with Distribution

Simone Brandon outlines new laws that affect mobile phone content and the opportunities for artists to distribute their work via mobile phones.

Hang the DJ?

Recently a number of Sydney based DJs were found to have infringed copyright by producing and selling unauthorised “mix tapes”. What does this mean for DJs and the rest of us who make the occasional mix tape to use in the car?

Indies vs YouTube

In the latest David v Goliath story, recent news reports have been furiously circulating about YouTube threatening to block independent music from the behemoth platform. Suffice it to say, spectators have been left wondering – what’s behind the beef between YouTube and the independent music sector?

Laugh, Kookaburra Laugh

As a follow-up to the landmark Kookaburra decision earlier this year, the Federal Court of Australia has now made its ruling on the damages recoverable from Sony BMG and EMI Songs

Licensed to Jive

Playing music at your place of business may not be a simple as you think. Ant Horn investigates when you will need a music licence.

Make the most of your gig

Arts Law's Live music performance: Booking gigs guide assists musicians with making the most of their live performances. Isobel Ferrier examines some of the issues musicians should consider when doing gigs.

Mighty Kookaburra swoop Men At Work

Musicians beware: in light of last month's Federal Court decision over 'Land Down Under', if musicians do not obtain the appropriate authorisation to use another musician’s work in their recordings they may be liable for ‘ripping off’ the original, even if the similarity between the music is not instantly recognisable.

Music sampling

Sampling is now an established musical practice, although it still generates strong legal debate. The purpose of this article is to provide practical advice for musicians considering incorporating samples into their work.

Musicians in the Black Update

In Balgo in remote north Western Australia, a small group of musicians sit in the exhibition space of Warlayirti Artists Centre  discussing the bands they play in, how they make decisions and what they should call themselves. They like the sound of "The Lost Boys" but think there might be another band somewhere in Queensland using that name. Behind them is the new purpose built recording studio built at the art centre in recognition of the emerging Indigenous musical talent in a community better known for its visual artists – including Eubena Nampitjin, Elizabeth Nyumi, Boxer Milner and  Helicopter Tjungurrayi.

Musicians’ Copyright Royalties in the Face of a Changing Industry

Copyright is an essential part of making money in the music industry. By and large recordings have been the main source of copyright royalties, however in today's climate of declining record sales, and with digital sales still yet to truly prove themselves, are artists losing their main source of income? Or are other uses of music, such as in film, broadcasts and live performances, sufficient to fill the void? What about live concerts and the festival scene (which, in contrast to record sales, are thriving)? Here we will look at the different types of copyright that exist in music, and discuss how songwriters and other musicians can earn royalties from exploiting them. We will ask how these royalties are affected by a newly emerging music industry, one increasingly based around live performances rather than studio recordings.

PPCA takes Radio Cap to the High Court

On Tuesday 10 May, the High Court of Australia heard an appeal from the Phonographic Performance Company of Australia Ltd (PPCA) against the current 1% cap on royalties payable by radio for the use of sound recordings. The PPCA hopes to remove the statutory cap that has had Australian artists subsidising the provision of content to the highly profitable commercial radio sector for over forty years.

The Devil in the detail

Competitions provide a necessary forum for artists, especially those embarking on their artistic careers, to advertise and promote their particular talent to a wider audience and to seek and possibly secure future commissioning for their work. For all manner of artists, creating works for and entering competitions at one stage or another in their career is so prevalent as to be considered a rite of passage! Regardless of whether you are entering your first competition or your hundredth, the devil is likely to be found in the competition detail.

This Is Us: Establishing Your Performing Name

So you've found your band members, you've got the instruments, you've come up with some great songs you're ready to show the world - but what's your name? More importantly, how are you going to make sure it stays your name not just for now, but for your future career?

Uploading your work on to a website

With very little effort you can create your own website to showcase your work. Alternatively, you can display your work on someone else's website. Before you do this, however, there are important issues you should consider before making your work available online.

We are just a tribute band

Tribute bands have become an increasingly common phenomenon. Arts Law is regularly asked the question - how do tribute bands get away with performing and profiting from other people's songs?

What’s in a name?

In this article Gibson Owen and Troy McGregor provide an introduction to the protection of names through the use of trade marks.

Case Studies
Joseph McNeill: Licensing Music

Joseph McNeill, also known as “Saucypeanuts”, is a Byron Bay based performer and composer. Joseph decided to upload his song ‘Convoluted Aether’ to Triple J Unearthed and subsequently received interest from a party wanting to licence the song. Joseph contacted Arts Law in May 2014 seeking advice about copyright licensing. Arts Law explained that if Joseph wanted advice on the particular terms of a copyright licence he wanted to enter into then he would need to use Arts Law’s Document Review Service. Otherwise Arts Law could give him high level advice about the general issues that arise when licensing music. Joseph decided to receive high level advice from Arts Law first.

The Brow Horn Orchestra: On the road to success

The Brow Horn Orchestra (http://www.facebook.com/thebrowhornorchestra) is a six piece afro-electro funk band based in Perth, Western Australia. The band has garnered a cult following since winning Best Funk Act at the 2010 Western Australian Music Industry Awards and Best Live Act  at the Perth Dance Music Awards. In light of the band’s growing profile, founding members Nic Owen and Karri Harper-Meredith (who started out ‘The Brow’ as a street performing duo back in 2007) sat down with Arts Law Senior Solicitor Delwyn Everard at the 2011 WAMi Festival to get some general legal advice around band management.

News & Events
Artists in the Black visits the Mid North Coast
16th June 2015

Arts Law, in collaboration with Saltwater Freshwater Arts Alliance is offering FREE legal advice workshops to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Artists on the mid north coast this June.

Arts Law launches new band partnership agreement
26th September 2012

Together with Allens Linklaters, Arts Law has developed a new short form band agreement. This template is an alternative to the longer more detailed band partnership agreement and can be used when bands want a basic straightforward record of how they want to work together, who owns the music they make and how they will share expenses and income.

Arts Law Reviews the Terms of Competitions Closing in March 2014
26th February 2014

Prizes and competitions can be a great way for artists to gain recognition and promote themselves however, many people don’t read the fine print or understand what they are agreeing to by entering. Arts Law maintains an ongoing watch over the terms and conditions of prizes and competitions for artists in Australia and internationally. This month, we rate 19 competitions closing in March.

Bush Band Business
6th September 2011

In conjunction with Music NT and Alice Desert Festival, National arts grant fund The Seed is proud to support the 2011 Bush Bands Business.

Bush Bands Business is a series of workshops for Indigenous musicians and technicians who are preparing for the Bush Bands Bash concert, a major live performance event held at the annual Alice Springs Desert Festival.

Defamed in 140 characters or less
29th February 2016

There’s the old adage which says that ‘Words are free. It’s how you use them, that may cost you’. So how relevant is this saying today? 

July competitions reviewed by Arts Law
9th July 2014

Art prizes and competitions can be a fantastic way for artists to build their reputation and earn income but do you know what rights you might be giving up simply by entering? Arts Law rates prizes and competitions closing in July out of 5 stars for fairness to artists.

May competitions checked by Arts Law
30th April 2014

Art prizes and competitions can be a fantastic way for artists to build their reputation and earn income but do you know what rights you might be giving up simply by entering? Arts Law rates prizes and competitions closing in May out of 5 stars for fairness to artists. 

More revenue for music creators 2012
14th November 2012

More revenue for music creators despite difficult economic times: APRA|AMCOS announces 2012 financial results

Music copyright organisation APRA|AMCOS has distributed 14% more in royalties to its members in the 2011/12 financial year. The increase has resulted from record revenue growth in the recording rights arm of its business, AMCOS, and from a program of accelerated distributions across all areas of its operations.

New legal resources for game developers
28th May 2014

Arts Law have recently developed a suite of legal resources specifically for game developers. All the legal issues are covered from conception through to development, production and distribution.  There are also sample agreements available including a loan agreement and music licence. 

Checklists
Business partnership checklist

This resource includes information on partnerships, including key issues to be considered within a partnership agreement, and a checklist for business partnerships.

Music management checklist

This checklist outlines issues which musicians and bands need to consider before entering into a management agreement. It is recommended for use in negotiations, before artist and manager sign a written agreement.

Music publishing checklist

This checklist outlines the basic concepts of music publishing agreements. Music publishing is one of the most complex areas of the music industry. Music publishers are an integral part of the contemporary music industry as they act as an interface between songwriters or composers and the rest of the music industry.

Guides
Music recording agreements guide

This guide outlines the basic concepts of a recording agreement. It explains the different types of recording contracts and briefly states the formalities of forming and negotiating a deal with a record company. The checklist also has a glossary of common terms which will help you understand what is being offered in a recording deal.

Sponsorship agreements guide

Corporate sponsorship is assuming an increasingly important role in the arts. This guide outlines the different forms of sponsorship that an artist or arts organisation may need to seek from a commercial organisation and what should be included in a sponsorship agreement.

Seminar Papers
Music: Get on Track (2001)

Experts in the music industry discuss recording agreements, the difference between independent and major labels, types of recording deals, contracts, royalties, artistic control and the practical process of getting a recording deal.

Music: Push the Button (2001)

Arts Law's 2001 music seminar Push The Button investigates the legal pitfalls in taking the song out of your head to the marketing and demo stage if you're an unsigned artist. The seminar covers everything from band partnerships, disputes as to who's written the song, using samples and cover work.

Books
Business Structures and Governance: A Practical Guide for the Arts

The Arts Law Centre of Australia (Arts Law) has substantially subsidised this publication for artists, now only $5.00

A practical guide for artists and arts organisations, this book provides a user-friendly guide to the different business structures and governance for arts organisations.

The Arts Insurance Handbook (2nd edition)

The Arts Law Centre of Australia (Arts Law) has substantially subsidised this publication for artists, now only $5.00

A user-friendly guide to the insurance world for artists and non-profit arts organisations. It outlines the various types of insurance cover available and offers tips on what to look out for when buying insurance, reducing insurance costs, public liability and insurance for volunteers, where to shop for insurance and how to make a claim.

Other Organisations
Australian Music Industry Network (AMIN)

AMIN represents the member, the state and territory music industry associations (Music Victoria, MusicNSW, WAM, QMusic, Music NT, Music Tasmania, Music SA and Music ACT) and creates a wide network that provides a national platform for the representation and the delivery of projects for the benefit of the contemporary music industry in Australia.

Australian Performing Right Association (APRA)

APRA AMCOS has 87,000+ members who are songwriters, composers and music publishers. They license organisations to play, perform, copy, record or make available their members’ music, and distribute the royalties to their members.

Australian Record Industry Association (ARIA)

ARIA is a national recording industry association representing the interests of its members, ranging from small “boutique” labels to medium size organisations and very large companies with international affiliates.

Contemporary Music Services Tasmania (CMST)

CMST provides services, forums and facilities to support the development of the Tasmanian contemporary music. Musicians and music industry workers who become members of CMST have access to a wide range of opportunities across Tasmania

IP Australia

IP Australia is the federal government agency that grants rights in patents, designs and trademarks.

Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance (MEAA)

The Alliance is the union and professional organisation which covers everyone in the media, entertainment, sports and arts industries. There are over 36,000 members which include people working in TV, radio, theatre & film, entertainment venues, recreation grounds, journalists, actors, dancers, sportspeople, cartoonists, photographers, orchestral & opera performers as well as people working in public relations, advertising, book publishing & website production. MEAA can provide information to members about minimum standard hourly rates.

Music Industry Piracy Investigations (MIPI)

MIPI is an organisation that conducts investigative, preventative and educational activities in relation to music piracy in Australia. MIPI acts on behalf of the 125 record companies through their association ARIA and over 2,000 songwriters and music publishers through their association AMCOS.

Music NSW

Music NSW is a not profit association which aim is to represent, promote and develop the contemporary music industry in New South Wales.

Music NT

Music NT represents and develops the NT music industry. It offers to its members support in form of office access (computer, photocopier, telephone, directories), advice on touring, recording, promotion, performance opportunities and access to a wide range of resources.

Music Rights Australia

Music Rights Australia is an organisation that protects the creative interests of artists within the Australian music community through educational initiatives, government lobbying and the protection of artists’ copyrights.

Music Victoria

Music Victoria supports the growth, participation and development of the Victorian contemporary music industry. In all its activities, it aims to add value to music makers.

Musicians Union of Australia (MUA)

The Musicians Union of Australia was formed to protect the interests of musicians. The MUA negotiates awards governing conditions and rates of pay, and represents musicians at all levels of government and industry.

Office of Industrial Relations

Free publications to help employees and employers understand their rights and obligations under NSW industrial legislation. Has information about registering as an agent.

Q Music

Q Music develops and represents all sectors of Queensland music industry. Q Music provides a wide range of services to artists and other music professionals such as workshops, resources, assistance and advice services, careers support.

Songlines

Songlines is an Indigenous music corporation which aim is to preserve and promote Aboriginal music. It proposes different services and facilities to Indigenous musicians such as performance opportunities, professional support and recording studio.

The Push

The Push is a youth entertainment organisation. It provides information and support to young people in Victoria who wish to stage alcohol and drug free entertainment or to develop a career in the music industry. The Push has strong associations in the music industry.

Word of Life International

Word of Life International acts as an agent of owners of copyright liturgical music to provide copyright licences, collect royalties and otherwise facilitate the availability and use of religious music by churches, schools, and other religious organisations in the South Pacific basin.