A simple question to ask yourself when deciding whether to write a photography contract or not is the possibility of repentance for not having done so. You are unlikely to regret making a contract when it provides you with additional protection within the million different possibilities and scenarios that you could face if something goes wrong. With this information in mind, let’s go to what we came for and look at the list of important elements of a photography contract. The basic information that every photography contract must have is detailed below.
Items to Be Delivered
Each photography contract you write must clearly state that you, the photographer, will provide what to the client as a result of the agreement. This typically is in terms of a minimum amount of photographs that you commit to deliver to the client. Other times it is a previously discussed package of quantity of photos, albums and electronic.
Also in this section, you must clearly state the medium in which you will deliver the printed material on photographic paper, in electronic format or both. Only include here what you are really committed to provide, if later you want to include something else you can offer it as a bonus.
Licenses and Rights to Photographs
Here it will depend a lot on your way of thinking about your photographic work and the rights over it, in addition to the legal implications that this could have in your country. There are those who do not provide high-resolution photos to their customers, so they ‘guarantee’ that they cannot get copies of the photos. There are others who provide high resolution photos electronically. The important thing is that the contract clearly establishes who will own the rights to the photos, the photographer or the client.
Clause of Non-Compliance
You love what you do and you are committed to your business and your agreements with customers, but there are many things that could go wrong. It is here that you establish the terms in which you will avoid being sued for large amounts of money for not having presented yourself to an event. Typically, the agreement states in this section that if an emergency event, equipment failure or other unforeseen circumstance hindered to fulfill your part of the agreement, you will refund all of the money already paid by the customer and no further claim beyond that can be requested.
Policy on Other Photographers Covering the Event
Today, when you come to an event, there are dozens of people with cameras who want to take photos. This creates a ‘competition’ environment by taking photos, people in the mood to take photos are placed in the middle, the lighting of the flash of other cameras ruin the control of your lighting and makes your work take double the time you planned. That is why the client must be clear that you have a policy in your contract that you have priority over any other photographer in the event.
If you plan to use the photos of the event in advertising material of your business or they will be used in another way that could generate income for you, I suggest you include in your contract an authorization that grants you the rights to use photos for such purposes.
Here you must establish in a clear and simple way in which terms the customer could cancel the contract. Here you must include how much money will be or will not be refunded until the date you will accept a cancellation note.