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 J. Carlton Ross



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The Difference Between

 A Literary Agent


  An Entertainment Lawyer

(from Abbey House Literary Agency)

  • An agent is: "A person authorized by another to act for him, one entrusted with another's business....One who represents and acts for another under the contract or relation of agency. A business representative whose function is to bring about, modify, affect, accept performance of, or terminate contractual obligations between principal and third persons. One who undertakes to transact some business, or to manage some affair, for another, by authority and on account of the latter, and to render an account of it." (Black's Law Dict. (5th ed. 1979) p.59, col.1, citations omitted)

  • An attorney is: " agent or substitute, or one who is appointed and authorized to act in the place or stead of another....Person admitted to practice law in his respective state and authorized to perform both civil and criminal legal functions for clients, including drafting of legal documents, giving legal advice, and representing such before courts, administrative agencies, boards, etc." (Black's Law Dict (15th ed 1979) p.1055, col.2, citations omitted)

  • A literary agent represents a client in business transactions between the client and third parties (such as publishing companies)--but who does not give legal advice.

  • The professional conduct of an attorney is heavily regulated by the laws of the jurisdiction where the attorney is licensed. These laws govern advertising and solicitation, client funds, confidentiality, and communications with clients.

  • No such laws govern the conduct of a literary agent

  • The professional conduct of a literary agent who is also licensed as an attorney, is governed by the same laws that apply to the professional conduct of other attorneys licensed in their jurisdiction--even though as a literary agent the attorney is not providing legal services.

  • Entertainment law is the body of law and legal principles that pertain to the entertainment industry.

  • The legal services provided by an entertainment attorney to writers generally include: business organization, contract enforcement, copyright infringement prosecution, litigation, securing copyrights and providing legal advice about copyright issues, securing releases and providing legal advice about whether a release is necessary or required, tax advise, and vetting (analyzing a work for defamatory depictions, trademark or copyright infringement, and violations of privacy).

  • The practice of entertainment law also involves advising the client on the business practices and procedures of the entertainment industry, and acting as a client's agent. Entertainment attorneys generally limit the emphasis of their practices to a niche.

  • In contrast, a literary agent shops a writer's work to the publishing industry, advises the client on the business practices and procedures of the publishing industry, and collects and distributes royalty payments for the client.

  • Entertainment attorneys provide literary agency services. Literary agents can't provide legal services.

  • Neither entertainment attorneys nor literary agents provide personal management services.

  • On Line Publishers And Book Sellers

  • Publishers Weekly Online

  • - List of book sellers, Libraries, Publishers, etc.

  • - Publishing Services

  • - Online Publisher of Mostly Technical Books and Manuals That Will List and Sell Your Book By Download or E-Book

  • -Warehouse Distribution            

  • - Warehouse Distribution    

  • - Warehouse Distribution

  • - List Your Book

  • - Film School

  • - Writers Resources

  • - List Your Book 

  • - American Society Of Composers, Authors And Publishers

  • - Writers Guild Of America (Official Page)

  • - Sell to Hollywood

  • - Resources

  • - Resources

  • - Publicists

  • - Libraries 

  • -Gay Publishers

  • - Online Publisher Sales

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