What is Indie Artist Resource (IAR)?
IAR is a central location for the legal and business needs of independent musicians. IAR currently offers basic legal template contracts and other business-related services for indie artists and bands to protect their work. IAR also has plans to offer additional materials in the future.
Why was IAR founded and by whom?
Indie Artist Resource was founded by Erin M. Jacobson,* who is known in the entertainment business as “The Music Industry Lawyer.” Through her work with many independent musicians, she saw that many indie musicians ignored the need for necessary basic legal documents and registrations due to cost, fear, or lack of knowledge. Thus, she created Indie Artist Resource so musicians could have a resource to obtain basic template agreements to protect themselves.
* Erin M. Jacobson, Esq. is licensed to practice law in California by the California State Bar.
What resources does IAR provide?
- Form template contracts and agreements with instructions for completion
- Intellectual Property and Performance Rights Organization Registrations
- Legal / Business Consultations
Who can purchase from IAR?
IAR’s template contracts may be purchased by anyone in the United States (please note designations on each listing for what is available to California and non-California residents). Registration services and consultations are currently only available in California for California residents. IAR is working on expanding to other territories in the near future.
Does an indie artist really need all these contracts and registrations?
Yes! Many musicians who operate without these documents often incur career or financial trouble (such as disputes with bandmates over money or music ownership). It is often at this point when they decide to call a lawyer and then it is either too late or too expensive to fix the problems. At that point, many musicians just walk away from their disputes, often losing the rights to music, songs, a band name, website url, or all of the above.
In short, an indie artist can lose the rights to all of his/her work without the proper protection. Completing the proper documents early on in one’s career will protect the artist’s work and help to minimize future problems that could occur.
How does IAR work?
IAR offers currently offers standard, basic legal contracts and business-related services that independent musicians most commonly need. At the IAR website, artists can browse the types of contracts and services available, purchase the items/packages of their choice, and pay through the website. After the order and payment is received, the artist will receive:
- a contract template with specific instructions on how to complete the blank fields of the contract.
- Contracts templates are governed by California law. Please note the designations on each listing for CA and non-CA information.
For registration services:
- a questionnaire from IAR with specific questions so that IAR can successfully complete the artist’s desired registration. The artist completes the questionnaire and returns it to IAR. IAR will complete the registration and send the artist the final registration once it has been issued.
- Registrations and search services are currently only available in California.
- Please note: registration services are subject to an attorney engagement letter for liability purposes.
- a 30 or 60 minute conversation with Erin M. Jacobson, Esq. to receive advice regarding the artist’s music career.
- Please note: Consultations are currently only available in California for purposes of legal advice under California law.
- Consultations are subject to an attorney engagement letter for liability purposes.
How is IAR different than hiring a lawyer directly?
Contracts purchased through IAR are only considered to meet basic requirements of independent artists. IAR provides basic, standard template contracts for artists’ baseline needs because IAR feels it is better for a band/artist to have a basic agreement in place instead of no agreement at all. The contracts do not cover more complex situations and are not tailored to more specific situations and/or needs. Artists simply purchasing products through IAR also do not consult directly with an attorney and cannot ask specific questions about their careers.
Registration services also do not provide communication with an attorney or advisor; registrations are processed solely based on the information provided by the artist.
Can I speak directly with an attorney through IAR?
Yes. Artists can purchase 30-minute and 1-hour consultations with Erin M. Jacobson, Esq. During a consultation, artists may ask any questions or discuss any legal or business issues regarding their career in the music industry. Consultations may also be purchased to discuss questions related to other IAR products or services purchased by the artist, however, please note that a consultation is a separate purchase from any other products or services purchased.
Currently, consultations are only available for California residents. IAR is working on opening this up to other states soon.
What if I need more than just a basic contract or consultation?
Contracts purchased through IAR cover basic terms only. If your band has additional needs or concerns, you may contact Erin M. Jacobson to hire her to draft a contract tailored to your specific needs.
Erin M. Jacobson, Esq. works closely and directly with her clients at every step of the career process. She drafts contracts that meet all of their specific needs, negotiates contracts to protect them, and advises them on all career aspects. If you feel this more individualized attention is more of what you need, please visit www.themusicindustrylawyer.com and contact Erin to speak with her about becoming a client.
Is a lawyer completing the work done through IAR?
There is a licensed lawyer either completing or supervising all registrations completed by IAR. All contracts templates have been prepared by a California-licensed attorney, but are completed by the artists themselves.
How do I pay for my purchase?
Payment is accepted via Paypal or credit card.