Thank you for your support of the creative community. Now more than ever, it is essential that we as a community come together to help those in need.

If you are interested in taking on one of these pro bono assignments, please contact one of our Legal Service Coordinators at [email protected]

If you have any questions about representing a pro bono PVLA or PA Patent client, please do not hesitate to contact our Executive Director.

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

Please see below for a list of available pro bono projects for low income artists, artist collectives, and small budget arts & cultural organizations or Download the full case listing here (PDF).

CONTRACTS

· Case 9902 (Full Service): Client is a producer, production assistant and investor working on a low-budget feature film who is seeking assistance drafting a contract to protect her personal financial contribution to the film.

· Case 9936 (Full Service): Client has created an online platform to serve as a marketplace for the licensing of high resolution images, paintings, and prints created by underserved artists. Client seeks an attorney to draft and review legal terms and conditions for her platform such as arbitration provisions, community guidelines, DMCA policy, terms of use guidelines, and disclaimers.

· Case 9980 (Full Service): Client is a painter who, thus far, has not used a form contract for her painting sales. Client seeks an attorney to review a model contract for her use from this point forward. Specifically, Client hopes to (1) simplify the language in the model contract and (2) modify the contract to address her rights in the case of resale of her work.

· Case 9984 (Full Service): Client is an independent contractor who works as a stage and production manager. She seeks an attorney who can consult her on contractual needs and help draft favorable contract terms for future contracts she may negotiate.

GOVERNANCE/ESTATE PLANNING

· Case 9865 (Full Service): Client is a nonprofit theater company that is setting up its endowment policies and procedures. The executive board of the theater has approved the drafted policies, but the client and the board would like an attorney to review the documents. The client would also like to discuss any relevant legal issues that may be implicated by virtue of the fact that some of the board members would like to make endowed gifts.

NON PROFIT BUSINESS FORMATION/DISSOLUTION

· Case 9850 (Full Service): Client is a single-member LLC currently under fiscal sponsorship. The client is seeking to transition multiple projects that offer consulting services to artists from a the single-member LLC into a non-profit organization. The client is seeking legal advice regarding (a) the advantages and disadvantages of separating these projects from her LLC, and (b) drafting non-profit bylaws to preserve artistic vision while maintaining eligibility for 501(c)(3) status.

· Case 9851 (Consultation): Client is a non-profit organization incorporated in New York and registered in Pennsylvania that uses dance as a way of achieving social justice. The client seeks to change its name and address and rebrand itself as a community services organization. The client seeks a one-hour consultation from an attorney on how to efficiently accomplish these tasks.

· Case 9899 (Consultation): Client is seeking a consultation with an attorney about whether to dissolve their non-profit. The former board of the non-profit voted to dissolve and the client is unsure whether the non-profit should maintain its status or transition into a giving circle.

· Case 9961 (Full Service): Client produces community-led multidisciplinary arts festivals that provide independent artists with opportunities to present their work. Client seeks to incorporate as a nonprofit and is currently in the process of drafting bylaws and putting together its board. Client seeks assistance from an attorney with drafting bylaws and with government filings for 501(c)3 incorporation.

· Case 9977 (Full Service): Client has been creating portraits and greeting cards for the past 15 years. Thus far, Client has been conducting her portrait business individually through social media and PayPal. Client now seeks advice and assistance with formation and start-up of a business entity for her portrait work.

· Case 9982 (Full Service): Client is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that curates and produces exhibitions. Client is winding up their activities in 2024 and would like to pursue dissolution in 2025.

· Case 9999 (Full Service): The organization runs a multipurpose events space in Philadelphia that opened in 2010 and has been operating under a sole proprietorship LLC. The manager/programmer is now seeking to set up a non-profit or fiscal sponsorship arrangement for the programming aspect of the business in order to access new funding sources. Client is seeking legal advice to determine what kind of non-profit or fiscal sponsorship arrangement would be right for the organization and to assist in the process of getting the non-profit set up.

REGULATORY

· Case 1247 (Full Service): The clients are equal co-owners of an LLC incorporated in Pennsylvania. A 50% share of the company is owned by a woman and the other 50% is owned by a person of color. Given that neither co-owner is a majority owner, the clients are challenged in figuring out how to qualify under local regulations as a “disadvantaged business.” Accordingly, they seek assistance from an attorney in compiling and submitting an application for recognition as a disadvantaged business.

· Case 9939 (Full Service): Client, an online publication, is seeking to change IRS status from 990PF to 990 in order to be eligible for grant opportunities that they are excluded from as a private foundation. Since 2018, the client has diversified their funding, and their primary donor has gradually decreased their contributions to less than 50%.

· Case 9987 (Full Service): Client is a new executive director of a nonprofit. Client seeks counsel related to concerns about the tax-deductibility of several types of "donations" that are made to the non-profit.

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY

· Case 9763 (Full Service): Client is a filmmaker who is directing and producing a TV series based on his books. Client is seeking an attorney to assist him in drafting a standard contract for the use of filming locations around Philadelphia.

· Case 9771 (Full Service): Client is the son of a prominent musician who passed away in 2013 in California. Client is seeking assistance with getting copyright royalties from his father's music. Client believes that the royalties may have been withheld improperly by a family member who is a surviving leader of the band. Client also seeks compensation for use of his own music by the same party.

· Case 9784 (Full Service): Client is a musician whose original song was sampled by a foreign artist without notice or consent. Client is seeking counsel to advise on a potential infringement suit or royalty arrangement with the infringing artist and their label.

· Case 9840 (Consultation): Client is an independent musician who believes his original song was infringed by another artist. Client is seeking a consultation with an attorney for an opinion on whether he has a viable infringement claim.

· Case 9916 (Full-Service): The client runs a non-profit that has received a grant to develop educational material based on stories told by children. The client would like to use children's stories for educational purposes and hopes to develop a process, agreement, and release with the parents of the children that will convey all necessary permissions to the client for their intended uses.

· Case 9962 (Full Service): Client is a drummer who is interested in licensing five of her songs that include musical contributions from other musicians (i.e., vocals and playing instruments). Client is seeking review of a draft agreement she prepared for use with those musicians prior to licensing.

· Case 9976 (Consultation): Client is a musician seeking a consultation regarding which classes to file her trademark under.

· Case 10003 (Full Service): Client has created a music album and wants to start reaching out to music organizations to sell the album online. Client seeks assistance from an attorney with obtaining copyright protection for the individual songs and the album as a whole.

LITIGATION & DISPUTE RESOLUTION

· Case 9737 (Full Service): The client was awarded a grant to create a large sculpture for a park in collaboration with certain students within the community. While installing the artwork, a group of individuals began harassing the client, ultimately resulting in the sculpture having to be relocated to a less desirable area. The client also needed to buy new supplies and hire a construction team to assist with the move, incurring considerable expenses in the process. Client seeks counsel regarding the potential legal claims arising from the forced move of her installation.

· Case 9913 (Full Service): Client is a documentary filmmaker whose latest project focuses on the mishandling of a murder case. The client is concerned about the litigious estate of the murder victim pursuing IP-based or other tort claims against her and/or blocking the Client's efforts to promote or distribute the film, and, accordingly, seeks advice of counsel.

· Case 9954 (Full Service): Client is the founder of a Philadelphia-based arts and cultural non-profit organization. Client believes they were wrongfully terminated from a previous non-profit organization and seeks reimbursement for expenses incurred while they were executive director of their former employer. Client also seeks the disbursement of grant money awarded to the non-profit through the Client’s efforts.

· Case 9995 (Full Service): Client, a graduate student, was involuntarily placed on a medical leave by her university that bars her from entering campus without advance permission. Client feels that the university took this action without due process or any sound basis, and that the university's treatment of her has been retaliatory and discriminatory. Client seeks counsel regarding potential legal action to seek redress.

· Case 9996 (Full Service): Client makes sculptural furniture and recently shipped a crate containing 11 light fixtures to one of her clients in London. A day or two after the delivery, the shipping company informed Client of additional charges due to the shipment allegedly being heavier than expected. Client seeks advice from an attorney on her obligation to pay and potential assistance with disputing the charges.

· Case 10000 (Full Service): Client completed illustrations for a customer who later turned out to be a scammer. Client was informed by her bank that the initial payment sent by the customer/scammer had bounced, and Client’s bank claims that she owes them. Based on this alleged debt, the bank closed Client’s account and Client had to start a new account at a different bank. Client seeks assistance from an attorney with taking legal action to (1) hold the scammer accountable and (2) get back on good terms with her bank.

REAL ESTATE

· Case 9937 (Full Service): Client is an arts organization in Delaware County that has a long-term lease for offices and gallery/event space. Client seeks to terminate the lease based on, among other things, the landlord's failure to address leaks and other significant maintenance issues.