Experienced lawyers like John Branca use their skills and knowledge to help clients throughout multiple fields, and the entertainment industry is no exception. It encompasses many professionals such as actors, writers, musicians, directors and more. Due to the unique nature and challenges of the field, lawyers working on it fulfill the following roles to service their clients.
One of the biggest responsibilities that John Branca and other law professionals have is negotiating contracts and other deals meant for their clients. It is important for artists to be fairly compensated for their hard work. However, they may not always have the necessary knowledge or experience in determining the worth of their labor. Entertainment lawyers communicate with the artists and the production company to negotiate a fair deal for both parties. Sometimes they even draft the contract themselves to avoid any problems.
Advising the Clients
Veteran attorneys clearly have enough experience to help their clients with contract negotiations. However, their expertise in other areas of the entertainment business may be enough for them to provide advice. Some of their fields of knowledge include payroll, taxes, labor laws, union and guild matters, and much more. Certain lawyers can be involved beyond advisory in certain areas, such as recruiting members for unions and guilds. However, most of them just guide their clients without replacing other experts.
Protecting Intellectual Property
The work created by artists, also known as intellectual property, needs protection from plagiarism. This activity allows others to gain credit, fame and monetary compensation from something they did not create. A lawyer ensures that the paperwork is properly filed so the creator or production company can claim the IP and it is protected from forgery. An attempt at doing so can trigger legal action against the offending party. Any creative work can be considered an IP, from scripts, books and song lyrics to comedy stand-up routines and images.
Lawyers in this industry wear many hats and fulfill several roles, but there are some limits to what they can do. Some have different specialties while others simply cannot act outside of their profession. They can refer clients to colleagues when they have specific requests or issues they cannot resolve. John Branca and other veteran attorneys with many connections can also link clients to other professionals such as accountants, agents, managers and others.
Entertainment law professionals have a wide array of skills, even if some have a particular focus. Potential clients can learn about their different responsibilities and enjoy the benefits.