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Survival Guide for Performing Artists

Legal Help
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Survival Guide for Performers: Highlights

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fairsqre.wmf (5014 bytes)Legal Problems?  No money for a lawyer?   Although "they" say NOT to take the law into your own hands, sometimes it's your best bet.  For other times, there are places where you can get free or low-cost legal assistance. 

Membership Organizations:

Many public organizations offer free legal assistance to their members.  One such group is Working Today.

"Working Today is a national nonprofit membership organization that promotes the interests of people who work independently -- a diverse group that now makes up nearly 30% of the American laborforce. Our members are freelancers, independent contractors, temps, part-timers, contingent workers, and people working from home. " [Ed:   This includes performers!]

"Members are entitled to a free half-hour consultation with an experienced attorney and a 20% discount on any legal work thereafter. Attorneys in the network have expertise in employment law, small business assistance, family law, consumer law, criminal law, bankruptcy, residential real estate, personal injury and other areas.

"The legal service plan is available to members, their spouses and children through a partnership Working Today has developed with the National Resource Center for Consumers of Legal Services." (from the Working Today website)

Visit the Working Today website (http://www.workingtoday.org ) for membership information--don't be shy, its membership fee is very affordable. They also offer very affordable health insurance for free-lance workers.

Do-it-Yourselfers: 

Check out Nolo's Self-Help Law Center for all kinds of info on your rights and how to handle legal problems yourself.

Lawyers for the Arts

Finally,  there's Lawyers for the Arts.  Most states have a non-profit branch of this group.  Below is a partial listing of branches in the U.S.

CA - CT - RI - TX - WashDC

California Lawyers for the Arts

SAN FRANCISCO OFFICE
Fort Mason Center, Building C, Room 255
San Francisco, CA 94123

OAKLAND OFFICE
1212 Broadway St., Suite 834
Oakland, CA 94612

SANTA MONICA OFFICE
1641 -18th Street
Santa Monica, CA 90404

Web Site:  
http://www.usattorneys.com/california/lawyersforthearts/

 

SAN FRANCISCO OFFICE
Tel: (415) 775-7200
Fax: (415) 775-1143

OAKLAND OFFICE
Tel: (510) 444-6351

SANTA MONICA OFFICE
Tel: (310) 998-5590
Fax: (310) 998-5594

Connecticut

Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts
c/o CONNECTICUT COMMISSION ON THE ARTS
755 Main Street
One Financial Plaza #L
Hartford, Connecticut 06103

Web site: http://www.cslnet.ctstateu.edu/cca/vla.htm
E-mail:  tprioli@ctarts.org

 

Tel: (860) 566-4770
Fax: (860) 566-6462

Rhode Island

OCEAN STATE LAWYERS FOR THE ARTS
P.O. Box 19
Saunderstown, Rhode Island 02874-0019

Web site: http://www.artslaw.org/
E-mail:  dspatt@artslaw.org

 

(401) 789-5686

Texas Accountants 
& Lawyers For The Arts

TALA Houston Office:

TALA
Jane S. Lowery, Esq.
Executive Director
1540 Sul Ross
Houston, TX 77006

Austin Office:

ALAA Austin/Central Texas
Michele S. Polgar
Executive Director
3710 Cedar Street, # 288
Austin, TX 78705

Web Site: http://www.talarts.org
E-mail: info@talarts.org

Houston:

Voice:  (713) 526-4876
Fax:  (713) 526-1299

 

 

Austin:

Voice: (512) 407-8980
Fax:  (512) 407-8981

Washington, D.C.

Washington Area Lawyers for the Arts
815 15th Street, NW, Suite 900
Washington, DC 20005

Web Site: http://www.atmar.com/wala/

 

Voice: (202) 393-2826
Fax: (202) 393-4444

 

Remember, if you have a suggestion or 
resource for your fellow performers, 
please e-mail us!

 

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Last modified: December 20, 2003