How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Dimitry K., Esq. Your Own Question

Dimitry K., Esq.
Dimitry K., Esq., Attorney
Category: Intellectual Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 36753
Experience:  I assist my clients with IP questions that arise in their daily course of doing business.
Type Your Intellectual Property Law Question Here...
Dimitry K., Esq. is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Not sure whether this is better under business law but here

Customer Question

Not sure whether this is better under business law but here goes...

I have been doing freelance computer renderings and animation for years. Everything I do, I put my logo on it, not too big, but down in the lower right hand corner. Usually this is fine, and the client does not even mention it.

One in a while, and recently today I am at risk of losing a big job, because when I mentioned that my work will be branded with my logo they were just flat out amazed and upset. I can see their point, a little. If they want to show THEIR client, they don't want my logo on it all. BUT, I still stick to my guns and say, its my animation, I own it, take it or leave it.

I have heard about "work-for-hire" but I have never specifically be engaged in this. I have heard that commissioned work is implied to be the property of the person that pays for it, unless stated otherwise. Here's the thing. I DON'T USE CONTRACTS. Don't agree with them. I have only signed NDA's when absolutely forced to, and I HATE them. Every time I sign a contract I lose out on something in the future.

All I want to do is do my work, put my logo on it, and have it satisfy the client and hopefully other people will see it and look me up and call me. Is that so terribly ?

QUESTIONS:
1) If I create a computer rendering for a company, WITHOUT A CONTRACT OR ANY KIND OF PREVIOUS DISCUSSION about it, who owns it, them or me ?
2) It is bad etiquette for me to want my logo on every piece of work I send out ?
3) Should I charge more to clients that don't want a logo on their work ?
4) Can I always legally display it on my website, regardless of the above answers for self promotion purposes only ?
2)
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Intellectual Property Law
Expert:  Dimitry K., Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your question. Please permit me to assist you with your concerns.

To ensure I do not miss anything, I will answer each question in order listed.

1) If I create a computer rendering for a company, WITHOUT A CONTRACT OR ANY KIND OF PREVIOUS DISCUSSION about it, who owns it, them or me ?
Depends on whether you are an employee or a contractor. An employee works for the employer so the employer owns all rights. In a contractor situation, the contractor retains the rights to the item because that is the default position in law.

2) It is bad etiquette for me to want my logo on every piece of work I send out ?
Not really, it is a means of identifying your own work and creating a copyright for your items. Most graphic designers, creators, or other intellectual property professionals do just that as a means of protecting their work. It is akin to a painter signing their painting even if that painting is commissioned to someone else.

3) Should I charge more to clients that don't want a logo on their work ?
That is really not a legal question, it is simply your own choice. But typically if they want full rights to the work, and simply leave you the residual rights under fair use, most creators charge more since they are giving up their own property almost in full to the other party.

4) Can I always legally display it on my website, regardless of the above answers for self promotion purposes only ?
Yes, you can--it would completely be covered under "fair use", which permits you to use your own work as a means of advertising or informing others, but not to use it for a commercial purpose.

Good luck.

Dimitry K., Esq., Attorney
Satisfied Customers: 36753
Experience: I assist my clients with IP questions that arise in their daily course of doing business.
Dimitry K., Esq. and other Intellectual Property Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Just a couple of things. 1) No, I have never been hired as an employee. Always as a freelance contractor.


 


2) QUESTION: On the jobs I have had to sign an NDA, ( and I know it generally depends on what is specifically in the NDA ) can I still display the work on my own website just for self promotion ?

Expert:  Dimitry K., Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your follow-up. Glad to assist further.

1. That is very good to hear, then your rights are retained by you.

2. For NDA work, displaying what you created would violate the NDA (as you are directly disclosing what is covered under the non-disclosure). Doing so would violate the NDA and could permit the holder of the NDA to file suit against you for damages.

Good luck.

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
< Last | Next >
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
  • My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer. Eric Redwood City, CA
  • I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight. Michael Wichita, KS
  • PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent. Three H. Houston, TX
  • Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!! Elaine Atlanta, GA
  • It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem. Tony Apopka, FL
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Alex Reese

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    2588
    Experienced in intellectual property law
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/sosolid007/2010-08-05_070536_Suitpic.jpg Alex Reese's Avatar

    Alex Reese

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    2588
    Experienced in intellectual property law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/scottymacesq/2009-6-10_221523_small.jpg Robert McEwen, Esq.'s Avatar

    Robert McEwen, Esq.

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    387
    Licensed Texas General Practice Attorney
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/tswartz123/2010-02-08_225658_Tommy.jpg Thomas Swartz's Avatar

    Thomas Swartz

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    374
    Twenty one years experience as a lawyer in New York and New Jersey. Former Appellate Law Clerk.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/dkaplun/2009-05-17_173121_headshot_1_2.jpg Dimitry K., Esq.'s Avatar

    Dimitry K., Esq.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    371
    I assist my clients with IP questions that arise in their daily course of doing business.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/personwilt/2010-1-10_164828_person1.jpg Wilton A. Person's Avatar

    Wilton A. Person

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    339
    MBA, Experienced and Knowledgeable in Intellectual Property Law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/BA/bart0358/2012-1-23_232424_1056.64x64.JPG BartEsq's Avatar

    BartEsq

    Researcher

    Satisfied Customers:

    192
    Juris Doctor
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/IP/ipesq/2012-1-9_164431_RetouchPortraitHighResCopy.64x64.jpg ipesq's Avatar

    ipesq

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    134
    Specializing in patent prosecution, trademark and copyright registration/enforcement.