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Stuart J
Stuart J, Solicitor
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 22624
Experience:  PGD Law. 20 years legal profession, 6 as partner in High Street practice
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For an expert on copyright law. Ive acquired my mothers

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For an expert on copyright law. I've acquired my mother's paintings,she was a
professional painter,after her death on giving my brother some family jewelry for his share
of them. The condition is,though I own them,on any sale of the paintings I need give him
a third of the profit. We still share copyright. My question is,I'm thinking of advertising the
paintings for sale on the internet,taking photos of them myself and broadcasting them on
the net. Can I do that as joint copyright holder without asking my brother,or does it need his agreement? At the moment he and I are not on the best of terms,and I'm not sure he'd



Hello, I am Law Denning and I am a practising solicitor in a High
Street practice. I have been an expert on this website in UK law since 2008.
During that time, as you appreciate, I have answered thousands of questions
from satisfied users on a variety of subjects.
Because we are all in practice with clients and court and other
users, I might not always respond in
minutes, particularly evenings and weekends. Please bear with me in that

It is my pleasure to try and assist you with this today. Please bear with me
while I gather some further information from you in order for me to be able to advise you fully.

Does he want to keep the paintings?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

No,my brother has no interest in the paintings.

Is your mother
still alive?

How did you acquire
the paintings?

I need the full
background details please

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

My mother's dead. We acquired the paintings on inheritance.

So were the
paintings left to you jointly in the will?

Please explain how he got jewellery from you in exchange but he still retains an interest in them.

I am wondering how he sold them but retains some copyright. Was that agreed? Do you accept that?

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

My mother died intestate so we inherited her estate jointly.


The jewellery was worth less than the probable value of the paintings,so we agreed on that exchange.


We made the agreement that we keep joint copyright.

It does need his
agreement, although if you do it without his agreement, all that is likely to
happen is that if he decided to take this to court, he will be awarded 50% of
whatever profit you make on the publications.

If you simply
publish them so that people can see them
FoC, for the greater good, then he can allege that he has suffered a
loss because the images could have been sold.

If you are
publishing them on the Internet, then get a specialist company to do it and that
way, they can incorporate a "tracking pixel" so that if anybody else uses it
without your consent, you can send them a bill. The likes of Getty Images use
specialist software which trawls the Internet looking for people using unlicensed
images and stinging them for the licence fee. In that respect, it might be
worthwhile getting hold of Getty to see whether they would be interested in
dealing with this for you and dealing with your reluctant brother's copyright

that answer the question? Can I help further? Can I answer any specific points?

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Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thanks for your answer,but I don't believe you've answered the question

I wish to place images of my mother's paintings on the net in order to sell

the paintings themselves.not the images. If successful I would sell the

paintings and give a third of the profit to my brother. Does using the images for the sale of the paintings transgress on his copyright? .

sorry, I misunderstood that. I thought you was getting rid of them and wanted
to preserve images for broadcast. I see now that the purpose of the broadcast
is to sell

is an agreement between you, it seems that you are allowed to sell the
paintings provided you give him one third of the profit.

think it would be implied into that agreement if this went to court, that if
someone was thinking of buying the picture they would want to see it and if
they wanted to see it, short of them travelling from wherever they are to look
at the picture personally, they would want to see an image of it. So either he
is agreeing for you to sell it, or he is not.

other issue, of course, is that by not allowing you to do what you are proposing
to do, he would be severely prejudicing any money that you get the paintings
and he would also of course we are limiting the amount that he gets.

course, if these paintings are worth tens or hundreds of thousands of pounds or
millions of pounds and prospective buyers will travel all around the world, but
they will want to see a picture of what they are buying. If your brothers
(potential) argument is to have any credibility, then known one would be able
to see anything other than the original painting. It makes selling them an

As I
said, if you are selling the pictures, then evenly be objects to it because you
are breaching his copyright, he is only entitled to damages and the damages
would be the amount of money that he's getting for the sale of the paintings in
any event.

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