What exactly is a models lawyer? Well a models lawyer practices several different areas of law. One aspect relates to modelling, and the types of deals and issues specific to the fashion industry, modelling agencies and customers that book talent. Here are some modelling tips from a fashion lawyer.
1. You don’t have to register with anyone to start an agency. There is the Association of Model Agents but there is no statutory requirement to register with them.
2. Overseas talent may be liable to pay foreign entertainers tax. HMRC has a specialist unit called the Foreign Entertainers Unit dedicated to sports and foreign entertainers like models, singers and actresses. Models are self employed.
3. Non cash payment or a TF arrangement does not mean working for free. It means an exchange between model and photographer, MUA, wardrobe stylist, hair stylist and clothing designer. The model gets something other than cash in return for modelling (for example: clothing, images, makeover).
4. Established main stream talent get regular work that pays fairly well. A small minority of talent like Giselle Bundchen, Carla Delevingne and Kate Moss are a huge success. However, most make very little money.
5. Catwalk shows pay the least money. Even when you work for big name designers it is poorly paid. Naturally, established models will always do better than new faces whatever the job. Notwithstanding, even established models don’t make much money from catwalk shows. After paying their taxes and expenses, established models barely break-even from a catwalk show, whilst new face models usually end up in debt to the agency. See the following article.
6. Fit modelling, catalogues and commercials pay the most money but they carry low industry credibility and exposure. High fashion work, including editorials, pay the least money but models get credibility and exposure. See the following article.
7. Plus sized modelling has specific requirements. In the fashion industry a plus size model starts at size 8 and up. The requirement needed varies from agency to agency. Some agencies will only take a size 8, while others a size 12 or 14. Models One has a very prestigious plus size division. See following article.
8. Modelling can be a precarious industry for the unwary. It is wise to check everything that is said and to always have written contracts.
9. Modelling is a highly demanding industry that requires a lot of hard work and dedication.
10.Copyright is generally not owned on images without an assignment from the author. However talent may still have the right of privacy over their image.
To book a face to face consultation for commercial legal advice you should contact a specialist fashion & modelling solicitor (charge rates may apply and may vary).