I thought of starting of a discussion in legal contracts with you and your bridal couple. How many of you have this in place. An actual wedding contract to protect you, and to protect your client. not just a one pager with saying that you will be there on their wedding day, but actually something that can protect you. What do you include? What about legal jargon? Would like to know what you want to be included in a contract or what you are worried about, then will post some advice or maybe a sample contract fo you to use for your clients! Looking forward to your reponse!

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Melanie, Although I have not shot any weddings as yet, I think it is important to have a contract that would protect both the client and the photographer. Things that can be included are, deposits to be paid, what would happen in case of cancellation from either side, what about interference of family that also want to take photographs, Client being late for appointments, damage to photography gear, by guests of client,. There are so many things that can be included, ownership of the photos etc. As far as legal jargon is concerned, I think one should strive to keep the contract as simple as possible without jeopardizing the validity of the contract in terms of the legal requirements. It is just my 5 cents worth.
Thank you Michael for your feedback :) :) Waiting for some more thoughts then I will post a sample contract for wedding photographers to use or adjust to protect them as well as covering copyright issues in South Africa. One thing that is different in SA law for photography is that if a client pays you to take photographs, copyright resides with them, and you basically sign over your images...Yes, all your hard work and creativity you give over unless specifially stated in your contract. This is not the case in other countries like US and UK.
Dit is eintlik jammer dat Suid-Afrika anders is as die ander lande in terme van kopiereg.  Die meeste fotograwe sit deesdae die foto's ook op 'n cd.  Daardeur kan honderde foto's gedupliseer word, sonder dat jy enigsins verder geld kry vir jou harde werk.
100% reg, bruide stel nie belang as daar nie 'n vol resolusie CD in die pakket is nie. Dit is ook so vir enige ander foto's sessie waar daar 'n vergoeding is, monetere vergoeding of enige ander vergoeding, as jy nie spesifiek 'n kontrak in plek het waar jy kopiereg behou nie, teken jy die foto's oor aan hulle, en hulle kan dit publiseer en vergoeding kry daarvoor.

First bit on copyright and model release to make sure you have in your contract. let me know if you want to see more on guest co-ooperation, delivery ect....

 

 DIGITAL NEGATIVES, PRINTS and COPYRIGHTS: The photographs, digital negatives or prints 

produced by xx Photography (insert name) are protected by Copyright Law (all rights 

reserved) and may not be reproduced in any manner without xxx Photography’s  (insert name)

explicit written permission. Upon final payment by client (insert name), limited copyright 

ownership of the resulting images will be transferred to client (insert name) under the 

following conditions: 

 

a. The digital negatives and/or slides are the property of client (insert name) for 

personal use and for the purposes of the reproduction and distribution of photographs 

to friends and relatives. 

 

b. client (insert name) must obtain written permission from, and compensate xx Photography (insert name) prior to an event where client (insert name) friends or relatives 

publish or sell the photographs for profit. 

 

MODEL RELEASE: client (insert name) hereby assigns and grants xx 

Photography (insert name) and its legal representatives the irrevocable and unrestricted right to use and 

publish photographs of client (insert name) entire wedding or in which client (insert name) 

family  and /or guests may be included, for editorial, trade, advertising or any other 

purpose and in any manner and medium; to alter the same without restriction; and to 

copyright the same.  

 

client (insert name) hereby releases xx Photography (insert name) and its legal 

representatives and assigns from all claims and liability relating to said photographs. It is 

agreed that xx Photography (insert name) may display and use the photographs taken for 

advertising, display, website and internet promotion, photographic contests, public display 

such as in malls, photography books, photography instructional books, store fronts, window 

displays, studio display, television advertising, magazine advertising and any other purpose 

thought proper by xx Photography (insert name).

 

 

I was recently asked by a friend to take photos at her wedding and did not really think before saying I would.  Being gullible, stupid and inexperienced I did it all for free but at no point it time did I even consider a contract or any legal issues.  This is quite an eye opener.  Thanks Melanie
Its extremely important to have contracts in place even if you are photographing family or friends, even more important as family and friends do expect more than the usual client and usually wants it for free :) You should charge at least to cover your time for any assignment that you do for family / friends. I charge family / friends the same price as the normal client, they know that by now and accept it, so stick to it and you wont have a problem.
Oh my!  Photographing family and friends are a whole other topic on its own.  They usually want the freebies!  I think it is excellent advice of Melanie.  Stick to your pricelist but because you are emotionally attach to these people (the family and friends) give them a little extra (more editted photo's ect) or after the shoot maybe a little discount.  But never feel guilty if it is yout way of 'buttering en breading'! LOL

Hi Melanie,  I would love to get a sample contract from you if its possible?

 

Thanks

Sandra

Hi Melanie, is dit moontlik om 'n "sample" kontrak te kry ?

Duisend dankies

Daleen

Dit is so waar die Ek en my venoot sukel om so kontrak opgestel te kry wat ons pas en so ook die klient. Ons het nou al deur geloop met kliente wat nie betaal nie ens julle ken dit ook seka al. Die sal ons darim nou n ruglyn gee om op te werk maar Melanie kan jy dalk vir my n voorbeeld stuur asb.

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