If you’re producing your own work, whether it be books, movies, songs, or anything else, you may need representation to make sure that you’re getting the credit and compensation you deserve. An entertainment lawyer may be able to give you this support.

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What Does an Entertainment Lawyer Do?

Entertainment lawyers represent people in the entertainment industry (authors, musicians, actors, producers, etc.) in lawsuits and can advise them about contracts they’re entering into.

How Do I Know If I Need an Entertainment Lawyer?

If you’re involved in the entertainment industry (or want to sue someone who is) you may want to hire an entertainment lawyer if:
  • You’re entering into or negotiating terms of a contract
  • Someone else has violated a contract
  • Someone stole your intellectual property
  • You’re figuring out publication or distribution rights
  • You’re being sued for any of the above
If you’re at all confused about your rights or obligations, an entertainment lawyer will be able to advise you and point you in the right direction.

How Much Does an Entertainment Lawyer Cost?

Entertainment lawyers use different methods of billing for different services. Many attorneys charge an hourly rate for court representation, advisement, and document creation and review. Some also use flat rates as well. Contingency rates are also used, either when your lawyer thinks you have a strong case and you’re asking for compensation, or for long term representation. For long term representation a lawyer will generally charge a percentage of your earnings, though only if you have a steady income. The rate you pay will vary depending on the complexity of your needs and where you live. Be sure to talk about the billing structure your attorney uses before entering into any agreements.

What Should I Expect from Working with an Entertainment Lawyer?

Any documents that your lawyer drafts should create a legally binding agreement, with terms that your lawyer ensures you understand.

If you’re suing another person and win your case, you can expect to win either compensation or the sole rights to your work. If you’re being sued, an entertainment lawyer will do their best to prove your innocence or reduce any charges against you. There are no guarantees in a lawsuit, but having a lawyer who knows the ins and outs of the law and court procedure will give you your best chance.

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Get started Ask a Lawyer a Question You'll hear back in one business day.