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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 92589
Experience:  JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
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I see the question posed to you by another artist on the 15

Resolved Question:

I see the question posed to you by another artist on the 15 pcs meant for sale in a business owner's shop. The owner would not return the art. So what can an artist do to protect themselves from either theft by the owner of shop..or some outsider helping themselves when no one is around to see the heist? I have asked this question before, but was told to get insurance or make sure the gallery has insurance. PROBLEM IS THIS...I asked my insurance man for said insurance and he said, 'no can do', and then galleries also tell me they do not have insurance. So what can I do to make sure my art is not stolen. It has happened on three occasions now..there has to be some source of protection or some insurance company that helps artists, no? Hope you can help. It is a rip off in my book that most galleries want a 50% commission, but adding insult to injury is the possibility of having your work stolen. Not only are precious hours/ones labor lost, but also the supplies used for said art, from the paints/canvas/mats or frames, making it a real loss for artist.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.

The artist can protect themselves with a contract with the gallery which includes them providing liability insurance for theft or damage to the art. The contract should also provide that the artist may have a lien on the gallery and the profits and accounts of the gallery in the event they fail to pay the artists for their art. If the gallery will not agree to cover your works under theft insurance or at least put up a bond for the works, then you need to consider not using that gallery.

The written contract is really the only way that you can protect yourself and if they claim they cannot get insurance, then demand a bond to cover the value or demand they place the value of the art in an escrow account and the contract should provide you would be entitled to your profits from the account in the event they do not return your art or do not pay you for the art.

You need to sit with a local attorney to draft your actual consignment contract with these galleries and once they draft one for you then you can use it over again.

Without a contract, you are forced to go to court and sue these galleries every time they do not pay you as they are liable for the works once you put them in their care.



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This is NOT the practice of law nor is it legal advice to you, it is merely educational information for you to use to seek out a licensed attorney in your state to get actual legal advice from them. Please use sites such as http://www.martindale.com or http://www.lexmundi.com or http://www.hg.org to find a local attorney to get actual legal advice in all matters.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 92589
Experience: JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
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Law Educator, Esq.
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