IP Meets T/E: Advising Artists, Authors and Musicians on Legacy, Inheritance and Tax

Co-sponsored by the New England Chapter of the Copyright Society of the United States (CSUSA) 
and the School of Law's Center for Law, Innovation and Creativity (CLIC)

Thursday, February 8, 2018 | 5:30 - 7:30 PM 
Northeastern University School of Law
250 Dockser Hall

Willa Cather famously told her literary trustee to prevent publication of her draft manuscripts and letters. Tennessee Williams forbade his plays from being changed in any manner after his death. And Beastie Boys Adam Yanuch directed in his will that his image or music never be used for advertising purposes. 

Are these restrictions enforceable? Should they be? Copyright descends to heirs, who become the owners of the intellectual property with all the rights and responsibilities IP provides. As we have seen in headline lawsuits, such as by the family of Marvin Gaye (about the song “Blurred Lines”), heirs can also be litigious. How can artists and authors provide for their heirs without the burden that caring for the art provides? These are complex and somewhat unsettled issues in intellectual property law. Come hear three experts speak about these issues from a variety of perspectives at IP meets T/E.

Light refreshments will be served. 

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Jim Grace
Executive Director, Arts & Business Council of Boston

Jim GraceJim Grace is the executive director of the Arts & Business Council. Previously he was the Executive Director of the Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts of Massachusetts (VLA) from 1998 until 2008, when it merged with the A&BC. Jim has experience working with artists and arts organizations in the areas of publishing law, public art, copyright, legacy planning, nonprofit incorporation and mergers, negotiation training, and artist live/work and nonprofit board issues. Jim was an adjunct professor for Boston University’s Masters in Arts Administration Program for over five years where he co-taught a course on Legal Issues in Arts Administration. In addition, Jim is a working author, book editor, and publishing attorney. He is the co-author of best selling The Worst Case Scenario Handbook: Golf. To date he has been involved in the publication of over eight books. Jim serves on the board of the Brookline Community Foundation and served on the board of Associated Grant Makers and the Private Sector Council of Americans for the Arts. He is also a founding board member of the Arts Services Coalition and a former founding board member of the Fort Point Cultural Coalition.

Tonya Evans
Professor of Law, University of New Hampshire School of Law 

Tonya EvansTonya Evans is a Professor of Law at the University of New Hampshire School of Law with expertise in the areas of intellectual property, entertainment law, trusts & estates, and municipal finance. A select list of her publications include, “Statutory Heirs Apparent?: Reclaiming Copyright in the Age of Author-Controlled, Author-Benefiting Transfers,” 119 West Virginia Law Review 297 (2016) and “Safe Harbor for the Innocent Infringer in the Digital Age,” 50 Willamette Law Review 1 (2013). Safe Harbor was judged one of the best law review articles related to entertainment, publishing and/or the arts published in the 2013-14 academic publishing cycle and selected for inclusion in the 2014 edition of the Entertainment, Publishing and the Arts Handbook, an anthology published annually by Thomson Reuters (West). Professor Evans is also author of an award-winning series of legal reference guides for writers and publishing industry professionals and was selected by Writer’s Digest Book Club as a club selection for its members. Professor Evans attended Northwestern University on a four-year tennis scholarship, and thereafter she competed on the women’s professional tennis circuit and played most notably in the US Open, Virginia Slims of Philadelphia, and Lipton in 1993. After retiring from the tennis circuit in 1995, she attended Howard University Law School on an academic scholarship where she served as editor-in-chief of the Howard Law Journal (1997-1998).

Professor Evans clerked for the Honorable Theodore A. McKee in the US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit for one year and thereafter worked at two national firms in Philadelphia until establishing her own firm in 2002. During that time, she also founded an independent publishing company now known as Legal Write Publications. Professor Evans is also a performance poet and author of two poetry books: Seasons of Her: A Collection of Poetry and SHINE! (book/CD). Additionally, her short story, Not Tonight, appears in an anthology titled Proverbs for the People, published by Kensington.

Peter Riley 
Principal, Riley & Associates

Peter RileyPeter Riley founded his own firm in Riley & Associates located in Newburyport in 2001. A liberal arts major at Northeastern University, he later return to school to become an accountant and has made continuing, rigorous education part of his professional practice. Peter’s clientele includes some of the world's most established opera singers, artists, writers, actors and musicians and he makes it a point to understand his creative client’s work to best serve their needs as their accountant. His book, The New Tax Guide for Writers, Artists, Performers and Other Creative People, was released in 2012. His passion outside of business and family is music. He is an amateur guitar player and a CD and photography collector.

Co-sponsored by the Center for Public Interest Advocacy and Collaboration at Northeastern University School of Law