I’ve addressed this question during a live on ARTY LAW’s Facebook page and will be addressing it again tonight at The Revival – Spring Edition, but I thought it would be relevant to address it again in a blog post, as I find it might just be the question I get the most. So here are 5 reasons why creatives should do business with a lawyer at one point or another during their career, regardless of what industry they are working in.
Of course, please take this as legal information and not legal advice. If you have any questions regarding the benefits of doing business with a lawyer, send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
#1 Prevention is key
There’s this belief that lawyers only come into a situation when it’s conflictual, but many lawyers (like me) will only do preventive work. If you need to go see a lawyer because you’re getting sued or you want to sue someone, it’s already too late. Doing business with a lawyer will allow you to set strong foundations with your clients, suppliers, and business partners, which will allow you to prevent conflictual situations in the future, whether by reviewing agreements you sign, giving you advice, or drafting the proper documents to protect you.
#2 To take control over your career
There’s something quite powerful about having a good grasp on your rights. Regardless of the industry, creatives usually have one thing in common: they make a living off the intellectual property they create. It’s easy to get mixed up between terms like copyright, trademarks, or more industry-specific terms like mechanical royalties, and producer points. Having a lawyer by your side will allow you to understand the legal aspects of your work, therefore enabling you to be more in control when getting into new agreements.
Doing business with a lawyer also allows you to come up with your own terms. Remember that if you don’t have a service agreement, your client might be providing you with one. If you don’t come up with your own clauses, the other party will. Taking control over your career isn’t just about getting the proper knowledge. It’s also about having the proper tools to have the career you want to have.
#3 A lawyer can become a strategic partner
Lawyers all have different expertise and it would be a shame not to take advantage of that. Lawyers can advise you, help you evaluate business partnerships, help you develop your trademark, and develop your business slowly as it grows to bring it in the right direction. Finding a lawyer you trust might just be one of your best business moves.
#4 It’s an investment
As your business grows, you will most likely be investing more and more money into your business. Maybe you’ll hire someone to design a new logo for you. If you’re in the entertainment industry, you might be at a point where you’re looking at publishing deals or getting an agent. You might have too much workload and need to hire sub-contractors or employees to help you out. Think of legal services as the investment that will solidify all other investments. All those new investments are based on business relationships in which you need to be protected. Also, don’t forget that solving problems is usually a lot more expensive than preventing them.
#5 You have other things to do
Yes, ultimately, you should be worrying about other things than the legal side of your career. You have business development to do, marketing, a career to grow. If you do not take care of that, no one will. Your legal work, however, can be delegated (and should be).
If you have any additional legal questions you would like to ask me regarding doing business with a lawyer, do not hesitate to send me an email at email@example.com or click on the link below to schedule a consultation.