Best practice guidelines

Organisations (councils, art competition organisers, art related festival organisers, etc) sometimes call Arts Law for advice on terms and conditions for working with artists, such as terms and conditions of competitions, artists in residence agreements, etc. By advising such organisations, Arts Law would normally be precluded from subsequently giving legal advice to an artist (or writer or performer etc) in relation to those terms and conditions. This is because of the risk of breach of duty of confidentiality and the potential conflict of interest.

Arts Law, however, considers that the interests of artists are best served if it can provide best practice advice to those organisations, subject to the following principles:

  1. The advice is given as extended legal advice service. Accordingly, the caller must be or become a subscriber to get the advice;
  2. The advice will be limited to assistance with terms and conditions which reflect best practice in protecting artists and the arts community. Arts Law will not provide any commercial advice to organisations on their dealings with artists.
  3. Before Arts Law gives any advice, the caller must:
  1. acknowledge that the mission of Arts Law is to assist artists and arts organisations;
  2. consent to Arts Law advising artists on the subject-matter of the best practice advice given to the caller;
  3. agree that in case of any dispute between the caller and an artist, Arts Law may provide legal services to the artist despite the caller being a former client; and
  4. acknowledge that the possible consequences of obtaining best practice advice from Arts Law are as follows:
  1. Information provided by the caller to Arts Law may be disclosed to artists seeking advice from Arts Law on the subject-matter of the best practice advice;
  2. The caller will need to seek alternative legal advice in relation to the possible commercial consequences of implementing the best practice advice; and
  3. The caller is waiving any right it may have to object to Arts Law giving advice to artists with whom the caller deals about the same matters.
  4. Arts Law cannot accept any instructions unless the principles mentioned above have been clearly stated to the caller and the caller fully understands the consequence of obtaining best practice advice from Arts Law.