Work-For-Hire, Buyouts or Direct Licenses?


We are pleased to rollout another new resource for Australian composers, this one called Work-For-Hire, Buyouts or Direct Licenses?


We have been seeing the terms Work-For-Hire, Buyout, and Direct License a lot more lately, especially with all the media surrounding Netflix and Discovery of late, and had the following questions:


  • What do these terms mean? 

  • How do they alter the scope of rights being granted to producers?  

  • What are the financial repercussions of signing 'work-for-hire', 'buyout', or 'direct license agreements'?


We also wanted to know if these questions were even relevant for Australian Screen Composers and learnt that the short answer is a definitive YES. While those of you working on international commissions are likely to have encountered these terms, they are also creeping into Australian contracts. We therefore decided it was time to create a new resource for Australian composers. It is called Work-for-hire / Buyouts/ Direct Licenses? and is important reading. Remember, signing these sorts of music agreements (or any agreement with a complete assignment of Copyright!) can have huge financial ramifications so please read on, learn more, and consult a qualified entertainment lawyer for specific contractual advice. Caitlin (prez), Brett (vice) and the entire AGSC board.

Please note the following disclaimer: the information provided herein on this website is of a general nature only and NOT to be construed as legal advice  The guild cannot advise you on specific points of your music agreement or on the law more broadly. Any questions relating to a contractual agreement should be directed to a qualified lawyer

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