Can I use pictures from a previous partnership?

This is a discussion on Can I use pictures from a previous partnership? within the Business and Financial Law Questions forums, part of the Legal Questions & Answers Forum category; I was in a partnership as a florist for a few years, I was bought out by my partner in Feb. I have decided to start my own business and ...

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  1. #1
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    Can I use pictures from a previous partnership?

    I was in a partnership as a florist for a few years, I was bought out by my partner in Feb. I have decided to start my own business and want to use some of the pictures of work that I did when I was in the partnership, I recieved permission from my former brides to use these pictures. My former partner is threating to sue if I do not remove the pictures. Do I have the right to use them??


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    The issue here is who owns the rights to the pictures. I would surmise that the pictures were not copyrighted, otherwise ownership would not be in dispute. Did you execute a contract with your brides giving them ownership of the use of the images? This would be unusual, but if so, It may be that they own them. if so, permission from the brides may protect you. As a general rule the photographer owns the images. An exception is when the photos are "made for hire." For example, if the photographer works for a photography studio, the studio owns the work not the photographer. I am assuming that you are the photographer. I think part of the issue relates to wether, as a partner, you were in an employer/employee relationship. If I were your ex partner I would argue that you were acting as an agent of the partnership when the photos were taken making the photos property of the partnership. If there was a buy-sell agreement check for a provision which might govern the ownership of intellectual property.
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    If you execute the partnership then you have to take the permission of your ex-partner otherwise he can sue you with the copy rights matter.


 

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