Licensing Agreement

Artists hold inalienable copyright to the results of their creative or interpretation activities, but they may allow third parties to exploit the results of their activities through licensing agreements (see also Economic Rights in Copyright) It is advisable to integrate the licensing agreement into one of the other types of contracts described here (in such case it is not necessary to enter into a separate licensing agreement, since licensing agreements, like any other contracts, can be made in the form of mixed contracts). If an artist is represented in the exercise of his/her rights by a collecting society, it is necessary (or at least advisable) to consult the respective collecting society on the granting of a licence to a third party before entering into the licensing agreement.

The right to exploit the results of an artistic activity (i.e. a licence) is usually granted in exchange for a fee, and it may be limited in time, territory and/or quantity and can take the form of an exclusive or non-exclusive licence. The licensing agreement should specify the individual types (manners) of exploitation (e.g. displaying photographs and audio-visual recordings of choreography for promotional purposes on a theatre’s website for one year after the last performance). It is also important that the agreement provide for potential changes or editing of the results of the artist’s activity as well as for the form or manner of mentioning the artist’s name in connection with the distribution of the results of his/her activity (for further information see the section Economic Rights in Copyright).

The fee for the exploitation of the results of an artistic activity depends on various criteria: the more extensive the licence, the higher the fee. The fee can have the form of a share (most often determined as a percentage of the proceeds from the licence, etc.) or it can be a fixed fee (a flat fee). The fixed fee is payable as a one-off payment or in instalments.  For long-term licensing agreements with licence fees in the form of a share, it is advisable to negotiate a payment schedule for each calendar year.

An annotated template agreement on the creation and repeated production of artistic performances and on granting a licence for their exploitation can be found here.