What type of contract can I have written up for people submitting stories for my book? 9 Answers as of September 05, 2013

What is the name or type of contract I need to have written up to protect myself? I am writing a book that consists of personal stories recorded from people that have volunteered to share their story with me. They know that they are not being paid for their submissions but I would still like a written contract for them to sign before I accept the recordings. The book will be available both a hard paper copy and audio book with the actual recordings from the volunteers.

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Mark S. Hubert PC
Mark S. Hubert PC | Mark Hubert
You will need an assignment of 100% of all their copyrights - regardless of whether they have actually filed for a federal copyright or not. The assignment should include the right to produce derivative works of the copyright material.
Answer Applies to: Oregon
Replied: 9/5/2013
Gerald R. Black, Esq.
Gerald R. Black, Esq. | Gerald R. Black
You need each of these people to assert that they are the sole and true authors of the work submitted to you. You also need each of them to assert that this is a work for hire and that each owns all copyrights to the work, and that the copyright is being assigned to you. You may need to pay them something in exchange for assigning the copyright. This is called legal consideration. For example, you are assigning title to your car to me in exchange for $250. Each contract needs to be signed by you and each author. You should consult legal counsel on this, since the laws in each state differ.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 9/5/2013
Microtechnology Law & Analysis | Daniel Flamm
I suggest that you retain an experience copyright attorney. A variety of issues can arise under copyright and privacy laws, they are not "boilerplate". It will be money well spent.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 9/5/2013
The Law Firm of P. Jeffrey Martin, LLC | P. Jeff Martin
A "Work Made For Hire Agreement" may operate to provide protection. Based upon your brief comments, you would be compiling a number of stories for purposes of creating an original work of authorship which in turn may be protected as a copyrighted work
Answer Applies to: South Carolina
Replied: 9/5/2013
Sebby Law Office
Sebby Law Office | Jayne Sebby
You will need a rights release that states what is being used (personal stories), where or what media (book, audio/visual), for how long (term of years or perpetual), covering what territory (U.S.), and upon what payment terms (credit by name but no financial recompense except a free copy of the book). You will also want to get a release to use their name and likeness for publicity purposes and a statement that the person has the right to tell the story and that no one else will be harmed by the story (slander, libel, false light, etc.).
Answer Applies to: Nebraska
Replied: 9/5/2013
    Tran & Associates | Bao Tran
    You will need an assignment of all IP rights from the authors.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/5/2013
    Webb IP Law Group
    Webb IP Law Group | Jason P Webb
    When someone is collecting submissions for a creative work, they ought to get an agreement from everyone providing a submission that assigns the intellectual property of the submission to the one who plans to publish the collection. It probably ought to also include the rights to the story and permission to publish it. If third parties are mentioned in a negative light, one might need their permission also.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 9/5/2013
    Law Office of Kirk Buhler
    Law Office of Kirk Buhler | Kirk A Buhler
    You are looking for a contract for assigning rights for the story. The names of the contributors should be included with the publication.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 9/5/2013
    Banner & Witcoff, Ltd. | Ernie Linek
    You should contact a copyright lawyer - as the subject matter of all parties - you (as author) and the others (as contributors) is covered by that area of the law.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 9/5/2013
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