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HomeLawNegotiating Contracts In The Entertainment Industry: A Guide For Lawyers And Clients

Negotiating Contracts In The Entertainment Industry: A Guide For Lawyers And Clients

Because the law is such a broad field, an attorney can use his legal skills in various practice areas. Digitization has made entertainment sources available to people worldwide, and entertainment law is growing in popularity. It also comes with the duty to defend oneself against potential legal problems in the future. The current function of entertainment attorneys is to protect and counsel the entertainment industries regarding potential legal violations. This article will discuss what entertainment lawyers do and who they are.

Entertainment Lawyers: Who Are They?

The film, television, radio, and other entertainment industries are protected by the legal expertise and counsel of lawyers specializing in the entertainment industry. A lawyer who practices entertainment law is knowledgeable in various legal areas, such as intellectual property rights (copyright or trademark), labor laws, contract laws, etc.

How Do Entertainment Attorneys Practice?

Like most attorneys, entertainment attorneys give their clients all the services they need to handle their legal problems. For instance:


An entertainment attorney may speak with the other party and negotiate the terms on behalf of the client. The ability to negotiate is a crucial part of the legal profession, and lawyers in the entertainment industry frequently deal with the terms of contracts. The customer always benefits from a skilled negotiator.


Entertainment attorneys may give their clients technical legal advice to protect them from potential legal liabilities. The entertainment lawyers hired by the performers and production staff must abide by all labor and employment laws, whether written laws from the federal or state governments or a negotiated union contract. While a complex case may entail multiple legal issues, entertainment lawyers should know labor, employment, and intellectual property law.


Drafting can be a crucial part of an entertainment law attorney’s duties. To conduct daily business, a customer (in the entertainment industry) may occasionally require legal documents to be written. An entertainment attorney must therefore be able to draft legal documents like copyright licenses, hiring contracts, infringement notices, etc.

In the area of entertainment law, non-compete agreements are standard. A production company might market and develop talent. They might ask the talent to promise they will not work for the rival company after their job with the business ends. An employee of one rival cannot work for another under a non-compete clause.


Individuals and groups in the entertainment industry file lawsuits when there is conflict. When a third party files a lawsuit against a client for violating their intellectual property rights or for any other reason, an entertainment attorney also represents the client in court.

The Cost Of Hiring An Entertainment Attorney

Entertainment lawyers bill for their services in a variety of ways. They usually charge an hourly rate (sometimes requiring a retainer before beginning work), a contingency fee agreement, a flat fee arrangement, or a combination of the three, just like other attorneys in the United States.

The cost of hiring an entertainment lawyer will depend on the issue, the lawyer’s level of experience, and the subject matter of their expertise. It will be costly to hire a lawyer in the entertainment industry. You will be lucky if someone is willing to sell you their skills for a fair price.

Entertainment attorneys have in-depth field knowledge and have honed their talents through significant effort. So, be ready to set aside some money to hire a reputable entertainment attorney for your company.

How Does One Become A Lawyer In The Entertainment Industry?

They need an excellent education to be good at their line of work. They should be familiar with the practical aspects of practicing law, such as interacting with clients, negotiating contract terms, making solid arguments in court, and producing accurate legal documents, among other things. They should also be knowledgeable about legal issues.

The two main requirements for becoming an entertainment lawyer are to earn a bachelor’s degree in law and to join the American Bar Association as an attorney. As part of their legal education, a person who wants to practice entertainment law might think about doing an internship at an entertainment law firm. This will help them improve their abilities.

Where Can I Get A Lawyer For The Entertainment Industry?

Finding an entertainment attorney may take much work for a company or person. The main question is, who is the best person for the job? You can read more about the people working as entertainment lawyers on their LinkedIn profiles, look up their law firms, or ask someone they have already helped for a recommendation. Taking advantage of the free consultations available will help you decide.

What Do Entertainment Lawyers Do For Your Business?

The definition mentioned earlier, of course, only scratches the surface of what an entertainment lawyer does for you daily. They must carry out the tasks on your behalf to protect your business and its employees while you maintain operations.

In helping you, they may deal with a variety of things, such as:

  • Drafting contracts for development and production in a variety of industries, helping parties negotiate, and changing arrangements to help parties reach an agreement.
  • Assisting a variety of entertainment businesses in setting up and negotiating distribution agreements.
  • Creating the necessary form agreements (location releases, appearance releases, license agreements, etc.) for specific projects within your industry.
  • Evaluating current contracts to answer or defend clients’ questions in court. This will happen during the writing and negotiating stages and if anyone is suspected or charged with breaking a contract.
  • Creating financial contracts for a variety of loans, sponsorships, grants, and other funding sources.
  • Connecting clients with experts who can give them the assistance they need to move forward more successfully (this is true for entertainment lawyers with more general experience in the industry at hand).
  • Encouraging communication between clients and unions or guilds.
  • Protecting the intellectual property of each client or business seeking assistance.
  • Giving clients the essential advice they might need in their day-to-day work.

As you can see, an entertainment lawyer can play various roles, making them a crucial resource on your side if you run a company in the entertainment industry. However, not all entertainment lawyers will meet this requirement. Instead, here is a list of everything entertainment industry attorneys might have to do.

To avoid hiring the wrong attorney and needing to be directed to multiple specialists, ensure you know exactly what type of job an entertainment lawyer does before contacting them.

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