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Case List
VLA | 1 East 53rd Street, 6th Floor | New York, NY 10022
(212) 319-ARTS |

Updated as of Wednesday, April 23, 2014, 3:36 PM

To request a case, please click the appropriate case number below to email VLA Legal Fellow & Pro Bono Coordinator Josephina Tapia at

Please remember that cases are sometimes unavailable as already on review by another attorney. The Case List marks these cases as "On Review." Occasionally, these cases may return to the list if not placed with the reviewing attorney, who has one week to accept or return the case. As many VLA cases are placed very quickly, we encourage you to include at least two cases in your case requests. 

Who We Serve
VLA serves low income and indigent artists and nonprofit arts and cultural organizations in every imaginable discipline. For example, theater, dance, fashion, the visual arts, performance, music, journalism, crafts, textiles, architecture, film, design, literature, and poetry are only a few of the artistic disciplines we service. Whether artists are looking to start a nonprofit dance company, copyright their manuscript or produce an independent film, VLA is available to assist them. Before cases are placed on this list, VLA meets with the applicant for pro bono services to confirm that they meet VLA’s financial and substantive guidelines. Further explanation of our financial and substantive qualification guidelines is available upon your request.

Table of Contents

Real Estate/Landlord/Tenant

Contract - Back to Top

13774 - On Review
Client seeks enforcement of his contract and payment of moneys owed under the agreement.

13923 - On Review
Client is a not-for- profit music education program which seeks legal assistance drafting liability waivers.

*** Client, who consigned photographs to an art gallery, seeks the assistance of an attorney to recover damages for lost and damaged works from the deceased gallery owner's estate.

Contract/Copyright - Back to Top

Client is a documentary filmmaker who seeks assistance obtaining errors and omissions insurance for his film.

13785 - On Review
Client is a film maker seeking legal assistance negotiating with a former employee who is using footage from client's project without the client's permission.

13758 - On Review
Client who wishes to produce a play written in the 1940s is seeking legal assistance to conduct a search for the holder of the copyright to the material.

Copyright - Back to Top

*** Client is a jewelry designer who seeks legal assistance assessing whether a store infringed on her jewelry designs, and possibly negotiating with the store.

13893 - On Review
Client, a composer, arranged a song for adverse party and now seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to recover royalties and credit that she did not receive.

Client, a songwriter and recording artist, seeks a volunteer attorney to remove allegedly infringing songs from iTunes. Client also seeks advice on how to obtain videos she has paid for but have not been delivered from a recording studio.

Client is a party to a probate action currently pending in Ohio. Client seeks assistance moving the action to a New York federal court and seeks to have a declaratory judgment entered in his favor that the copyright assignment is valid.

13954 - On Review
*** Client seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to draft a cease and desist letter.

*** Client is an artist who seeks the assistance of a volunteer attorney to recover works in Adverse Party's possession, secure the copyrights in her works and send a cease and desist letter for the unauthorized use of her works in a film.

Corporate - Back to Top

13955 - On Review
Client is a filmmaker seeking assistance incorporating his film as an LLC in New York.

*** Client, a music educator, seeks an attorney to start an LLC and to register a trademark.

Dispute/Litigation - Back to Top

*** Fashion designer and dancer engaged Adverse Party to create a prototype of his design for a new type of dancewear. The Adverse Party demanded that Client sign a contract waiving his rights in the product upon delivery of the prototype. Client seeks legal assistance to negotiate with Adverse Party.

Client seeks legal representation in recovering a portfolio of artwork which is being held by a family member.

Dispute/Litigation/Negotiation - Back to Top

Client, a ballet costume designer, needs legal assistance evaluating the strength of her claim for payment against the adverse party, who engaged her to design costumes for his ballet academy.

*** Client is a filmmaker, who seeks legal assistance in negotiating an agreement with a production company, the Adverse Party. Client worked for the Adverse Party for a number of months, and now they are experiencing a dispute over ownership of materials and compensation.

13904 - On Review
Client, a filmmaker, seeks a volunteer attorney to assist her in a suit against an adverse party who breached their Collaboration Agreement and displayed her film in an unauthorized public performance.

Documentary film writer and director seeks legal assistance in negotiating the restoration of his director credit in promotional materials relating to a film and assessing the strength of a defamation claim grounded on the omission of said director credit.

*** Client is a songwriter who seeks an accounting from a music distributor to determine if he is owed any money for sales of his singles.

13920 - On Review
Clients are defendants in a lawsuit for alleged breach of contract regarding a vocal recording. Client seeks legal assistance defending the litigation.

Client is seeking the assistance of an attorney to help him recover his artwork or compensation for its value from a gallery at which the work was once displayed, but has since gone missing.

Immigration - Back to Top

13795 - On Review
Client, a dancer/singer/actress who is in the United States on a J-1 visa, seeks legal assistance with an O-1 visa application.

Client is a singer and actress seeking to apply for an O-1 visa.

Client is an actress that is currently on an OPT visa, and would like the assistance of an attorney to obtain an O-1 artist's visa.

*** Client is a visual artist that would like the assistance of an attorney to apply for an O-1 artist's visa.

13938 - On Review
Client is a Canadian spatial designer who has been working in the U.S. for over three years on TN visas. She now wants to apply for an O-1 visa.

Non-Profit - Back to Top

Client, a non-profit dance organization, seeks assistance in reinstating its tax exempt status.

Owner seeks assistance of a volunteer attorney to re-incorporate her for-profit organization as a not-for-profit with 501(c)(3) status.

Patent - Back to Top

*** Client seeks a pro bono attorney to help with the drafting and filing of a patent for an invention which prevents clogs from forming in sinks and bathtubs. Client already has a provisional patent on his invention.

13881 - On Review
Client seeks the assistance of a volunteer patent attorney to file a patent application for Client’s dance-related stretching invention.

*** Client is a retired engineer who has invented a new type of engine. He seeks the assistance of a patent attorney to assess the patentability of his invention and prepare a patent application if possible.

*** Client has developed an invention that falls under patentable computer or mobile-based applications. Client seeks the assistance of a volunteer patent attorney to prepare and prosecute a patent application for his invention.

*** Client has invented a new type of bag that is both fashionable and ergonomic. Client seeks volunteer attorney to file patent application.

*** Client is the inventor of an exercise device. Client seeks the assistance of a volunteer patent attorney in preparing and submitting a patent application.

13935 - On Review
Client is an inventor who created a novel exercise mat. Client has drawings and has performed a preliminary prior art search. Client seeks the pro bono assistance of a volunteer patent attorney to help prepare and prosecute his application.

13823 - On Review
Client is an inventor who seeks patent protection for an invention within the athletic safety equipment class. Client seeks the pro bono assistance of a patent attorney to obtain a utility patent.

Real Estate/Landlord/Tenant - Back to Top

The Client is a non-profit organization that has been operating for several years and is seeking to build a museum. The donated property on which the museum would be located is historically significant to the mission. Several years ago, the City of New York proposed taking the property for its own purposes under eminent domain. The Client seeks legal assistance with preventing the City from unduly taking their deeded property.

Client is a not-for-profit foundation seeking legal assistance obtaining compensation for the reconstruction of a building structure that Adverse Party damaged.

Trademark - Back to Top

*** Client, a bag designer, seeks legal assistance registering a trademark.