Greetings PVLA Volunteers!  

Thank you for your continued dedication and support of the creative community through Philadelphia Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts.  As the world collectively seeks to respond to the global COVID-19 pandemic, PVLA is continuing to aid artists and arts organizations across the Philadelphia region.  Now more than ever, it is essential that we as a community come together to help those in need.  

Please see below for a list of available pro bono projects for artists and arts organizations, and let us know whether you would be interested and available to take on one of these cases. If you are interested in taking on a pro bono assignment, please contact one of our Legal Service Coordinators at [email protected] to obtain further information If you have any questions about representing a pro bono PVLA or PA Patent client, please do not hesitate to contact our Executive Director, Ryan Morris, at [email protected].

NOTE: attorneys should be sure to submit a volunteer application before signing on to take a pro bono case with PVLA.

Contracts 

  • Project 27065 (Full Service): Client is an independent musician and composer seeking an attorney to provide review and consultation regarding a standard agreement that she received from BMI for the registration of several of her songs. Client would also like the attorney to provide further consultation regarding the nature of Performers’ Rights Organizations (“PRO’s”) generally, including the pros and cons of working with such organizations as an independent artist.
  • Project 27107 (Full Service): Client is an independent music artist/producer seeking an attorney to review a prior ownership and distribution agreement signed with other artists and co-producers and an outside record label, for a collaborative song release, and to offer consultation and assistance in assessing and recovering any royalties that may be owed to the client for both the original and remixed versions of the song. Client would also like the attorney to provide consultation and assistance in negotiating and drafting an ownership and distribution agreement for the anticipated release of a second song collaboration featuring some of the same artists and co-producers. (See also “Intellectual Property” below).
  • Project 27165 (Full Service): Client is a local nonprofit symphony orchestra company located in Delaware County seeking assistance in negotiating a collective bargaining agreement with a local chapter of the American Federation of Musicians (“AFM”) union to secure involvement of union artists and performers for the upcoming 2021-22 season.
  • Project 27304 (Full Service): Client is a local non-profit organization dedicated to providing access to new children’s publications promoting diverse cultural and linguistic experiences, helping to grow school libraries, and supporting teachers in their professional interests. The organization is in the process of setting up a competition to receive and review submissions of original, cultural family recipes for inclusion in a cookbook publication. Client is seeking an attorney to assist them in drafting a template agreement to govern the ownership of recipe submissions and spell out the rules and requirements of the contest. If possible, client would also like the attorney to assist them in reviewing the rules and guidelines for their competition to ensure that they are in compliance with state gaming laws and regulations (see “Regulatory Compliance” below).
  • Project 27375 (Full Service): Client is a local nonprofit performing arts venue and exhibition space showcasing local emerging artistic talent. The organization seeks an attorney to draft an agreement with two other performing arts organizations in the city formalizing understandings and expectations related to the group’s collective use/ownership of various sound, lighting and video equipment to be purchased with funding from a joint grant award.

 

Copyright/Trademark 

  • Project 27028 (Full Service): Client is an independent dance instructor seeking assistance in securing intellectual property protections for her recorded online teaching videos demonstrating choreography and sequences using “Alexander Technique.” Client would also like a consultation regarding the use of copyrighted images/music in future videos.
  • Project 27105 (Full Service): Client is an independent musician seeking counsel and assistance in negotiations with a music production company to have her music removed  from their website and streaming platforms. Alternatively, Client would like the attorney to assist her in renegotiating a previously-drafted, unexecuted licensing agreement with the organization to amend the terms of their streaming. 
  • Project 27107 (Full Service): Client is an independent music artist/producer seeking an attorney to review a prior ownership and distribution agreement signed with other artists and co-producers and an outside record label, for a collaborative song release, and to offer consultation and assistance in assessing and recovering any royalties that may be owed to the client for both the original and remixed versions of the song. Client would also like the attorney to provide consultation and assistance in negotiating and drafting an ownership and distribution agreement for the anticipated release of a second song collaboration featuring some of the same artists and co-producers. (See also “Contracts” above).
  • Project 27198 (Full Service): Client is an independent singer and music artist looking to trademark her stage name. Client is seeking an attorney to assist her in either reviving her previously abandoned trademark application, or in filing a new registration on an amended version of her stage name.
  • Project 27202 (Full Service): Client is a fiscally-sponsored theater organization seeking consultation and assistance in creating, copyrighting and distributing an anthology of 154 theatrical and musical adaptations of Shakespeare’s sonnets, created in collaboration with 52 local Philadelphia playwrights. Client is also seeking an attorney to assist them in drafting a template agreement for use with each of the playwrights involved spelling out rights of intellectual property ownership and compensation for the works’ inclusion in the anthology.

Dispute Resolution

  • Project 27295 (Full Service): Client is an independent architect/designer who is seeking an attorney to provide consultation and possible representation regarding a contractual dispute with two former clients over their lack of payment for services rendered on a home renovation project.
  • Project 27381 (Consultation): Client is an independent musical artist and composer who is seeking consultation with an attorney to discuss options for enforcement of their rights of attribution and compensation related to a jointly-authored musical composition piece that has since been incorporated into a number of performances by a local ballet company.

Employment

  • Project 27376 (Consultation): Client is an independent theatre artist and former Artistic Director of a local nonprofit theatre company who is seeking a consultation with an attorney to discuss any legal or other obligations owed to the company (if any) in relation to her resignation from her position.

Entertainment

  • Project 27365 (Consultation): Client is an independent musician seeking consultation with an attorney to answer questions and discuss best practices surrounding the process of negotiating publication and distribution of her music with record labels.
  • Project 27367 (Consultation): Client is an independent musician seeking consultation with an attorney to answer questions and discuss best practices surrounding the process of negotiating publication and distribution of his music with record labels.

Nonprofit

  • Project 25364 (Full Service): Client is a Philadelphia solo-voice renaissance polyphony ensemble comprised of six (6) performers. The group is currently seeking an attorney to assist them in completing the process of nonprofit incorporation. Client has filed nonprofit articles of incorporation with the state of Pennsylvania and is seeking an attorney to assist them in completing/filing any and all necessary state charitable registration(s) as well as IRS filings for federal tax-exempt status.
  • Project 27144 (Full Service): Client is a Pennsylvania nonprofit organization with a mission to promote, present and educate members of the public on Indian classical music and dance. Client is seeking an attorney to assist them in reviewing and drafting a sexual harassment policy to be implemented at all levels of the organization (e.g. hiring/employment policies, talent and performance booking contracts, organization bylaws, etc.).
  • Project 27203 (Full Service): Client is a Pennsylvania nonprofit art museum dedicated to preserving and promoting the works of Philadelphia artists. Client is seeking an attorney to assist them in reinstating their 501(c)(3) nonprofit tax exempt status with the IRS, as well as filing their Pennsylvania Charity Registration and updating the organization’s bylaws.
  • Project 27283 (Full Service): Client is an independent film writer seeking an attorney to assist in the process of incorporating a nonprofit arts organization dedicated to helping film writers/producers improve the quality of their writing skills through writer workshops and peer script reviews. Client requires assistance in drafting and filing nonprofit articles of incorporation and drafting a set of nonprofit bylaws for the organization, as well as reviewing necessary state and federal paperwork related to tax exemption.
  • Project 27330 (Full Service): Client is a Pennsylvania nonprofit theater company based out of Philadelphia that is currently seeking an attorney to assist them in obtaining federal 501(c)(3) tax exemption and filing their Pennsylvania Charitable Registration. Client would also like the attorney to assist their board in drafting and implementing a set of nonprofit bylaws for the organization.
  • Project 27359 (Full Service): Client is a Pennsylvania nonprofit community center seeking to provide music and culinary education and other arts-based programming to Philadelphia youth. Client is seeking an attorney to assist them in obtaining federal and state tax-exemption and state charity registration, and in drafting a set of nonprofit bylaws for the organization.

Regulatory Compliance

  • Project 27304 (Full Service): Client is a local non-profit organization dedicated to providing access to new children’s publications promoting diverse cultural and linguistic experiences, helping to grow school libraries, and supporting teachers in their professional interests. The organization is in the process of setting up a competition to receive and review submissions of original, cultural family recipes for inclusion in a cookbook publication. Client is seeking an attorney to review the rules and guidelines for their competition to ensure that they are in compliance with state gaming laws and regulations. If possible, client would also like the attorney to assist them in drafting a template agreement to govern the ownership of recipe submissions and spell out the rules and requirements of the contest (see “Contracts” above).
  • Project 27356 (Consultation): Client is an independent theater and performing artist seeking consultation with an attorney to discuss the legal implications of offering scratch-off state lottery tickets to participants in an upcoming contemporary theater piece that he is planning. Client may also require consultation to discuss the need for the creation of agreements governing the use of lottery proceeds should the participants receive a winning ticket.