Model Release Disclaimer

 
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bubs
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 05, 2009 8:20 pm    Post subject: Model Release Disclaimer Reply with quote

A client wants me to shoot a mall they are working with. They want people in the images but I told them I can't get releases for the people in the photos. So I'm wondering if there is a disclaimer out there that releases me from liability and puts it on the agency. They want to and are willing to sign over responsibility.
Anyone?
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Mike
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 05, 2009 9:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I did a similar job where on the estimate, the job confirmation, the PO the Info part of the digital file,and the invoice I stated there were no model releases available and the client assumes all liability and indemniifes me from blah blah blah. It was a while ago and a friend's wife was a lawyer, she looked at it made a couple changes and was good to go. I felt as long it was on record they couldn't put the blame on me later on down the road.

If they want to do it maybe their legal dept could draft something accepting the responsibility...
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bubs
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 06, 2009 7:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey Mike
that what I'm looking for. Unfortunately its a really small agency and I doubt they could pull it together before I could . . . . . you don't happen to have a copy of yours lying around do you?

thanks
r
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Mike
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 06, 2009 9:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Bubs-

That was 2 computers and 3 time zones ago. I don't have any idea where I'd find it. I am thinking if you put them 'on notice' that there were no model releases and that they would take full responsibility and had them acknowledge that, you probably would be in the clear.
Maybe find a lawyer (try Legal Grind there is one in SantaMonica that I visited once it's on Lincoln at Ocean Park) to take a look and make sure you are covered.
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Leslie
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 07, 2009 3:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Get it in writing, signed by someone with authority at the agency (not just an AD or AB!). Even then you could get named in a suit--there is nothing to stop someone from calling you a defendant. But having a signed assumption of liability would help if it comes to that.

Oh, and if you got a PO for that project, they have probably already put that liability on you. Make sure to read your POs--the fine print on those is often filled with nasty terms like assumptions of liability.

[not legal advice, just my personal opinions]
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vjp
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 07, 2009 5:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I did a few projects for a large mall developer and even though they owned the malls and it is private property the general public do not pay admission and they have the right to a "respect of privacy" and so any shots we did that the general public in them were shot with motion blur or cropped. If there were photogenic scenarios with the general public that we felt were worth the effort, our producer would approach them with ID, a comp of the shots, a $100 mall gift card and a model release. We also worked with paid talent and our producer secured permission to use shopping bags/packages from flagship tenants. All the tenant exteriors that were in backgrounds were already released as part of their tenancy agreement.

Good Luck!

vjp
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bubs
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2009 9:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I find the whole release issue a very misunderstood aspect of "public" shootings.
I remember back in school the instructors told us in groups of 20 or more people in a public place and releases were not needed. Obviously a mall is not "public" but like vjp says is kind of in a grey area where they don't pay admission but is private.
I remember the case of Philip-Lorca diCorcia and his lawsuit he prevailed over based on the street art , not commerce idea.
Obviously this is commercial but no one is being taken advantage of or their image being mistreated.
I do play it safe whenever I shoot anyone and have model releases filling my office.
Is there a clear cut legislation out there to go by?
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shanekislack
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2009 2:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Is there a clear cut legislation out there to go by?

Yes but Sasquatch and Santa Claus are fighting over it.
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Leslie
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2009 2:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

bubs wrote:
I
Is there a clear cut legislation out there to go by?


In a word: no. But one thing I'm learning in law school is that there rarely is such a thing. Wink

One thing I would suggest to everyone is to question everything legal-ish you learned in (art) school. I hear more bad advice coming from very well meaning instructors than I do from any other place. Many of them have not been in the "real" world for a long time and are making pronouncements off 20-year-old rumor. For example, many are unaware of the ramifications of the DCMA, or that there even is such a piece of legislation. Or they think you have no protection if you don't include a notice with the work.

Best--
Leslie
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