What’s Happening

LHAA offers webinars on legal topics of interest to artists and arts organizations.New webinars coming late 2023/winter 2024.Webinars are free and open to the public.

Legal Help for Artists Atlantic webinars give legal information and explain the law in a general way. The information is not legal advice. If you have a legal problem, contact a lawyer.

Past Webinars:

Shopping Options: A case study in negotiating entertainment contracts

Film/tv lawyer Jim Cunningham is joined by Alayna Kolodziechuk and Sierra Peterson at the Technology and Innovation Law Clinic at Dalhousie University to discuss the practical approach to negotiating entertainment contracts. This moderated panel:

  1. Highlights the proverbial ins and outs of shopping and option agreements as commonly seen in the film and television world; and
  2. Considers how to navigate the different interests of the production company versus creator.

About Alayna Kolodziechuk

Alayna R. Kolodziechuk is the new Director of the initio Technology & Innovation Law Clinic at the
Schulich School of Law at Dalhousie University. Alayna has 10 years’ experience advising
businesses and not-for-profits in the creative and tech industries including at an entertainment
law boutique in Toronto. She is thrilled to bring her experience to the Clinical setting at Dalhousie,
which has the dual purpose of 1) educating senior law students through practical experience in
business law matters and 2) serving the startup community through the provision of low cost
services. The Clinic’s focus is on Intellectual Property and Information Technology issues within
business law. Alayna enjoys advocating for clients and also supporting them in their own
self-advocacy. She looks forward to sharing strategies in this workshop that anyone can use to
better understand and negotiate their own contracts.

About Jim Cunningham

Jim Cunningham commenced legal practice in 2014 with a boutique corporate/ commercial firm, focusing nearly exclusively on startup finance and trademark prosecution and litigation. Following a stint as in-house counsel for a Canadian technology company, he presently acts as general counsel for a small Atlantic-Canadian film and television producer group.
Jim, like Alayna, received his law degree from Dalhousie University’s Schulich School of Law. He spent his twenties in tour management for a number of Canadian artists touring domestically and internationally.
For more information about Jim, please visit:

About Sierra Peterson

Sierra is a third-year law student at the Schulich School of Law. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing with Honours from the University of British Columbia. Prior to attending law school, Sierra worked as a Registered Nurse in mental health and addictions.

Sierra is passionate about intellectual property law and technological innovation in healthcare and beyond and is currently pursuing the Law and Technology Specialization certificate here at Schulich. Sierra spent last summer at Miller Thomson LLP in Vancouver with a focus on intellectual property law and will be returning there to article in July 2023. In her spare time, Sierra enjoys playing softball, horseback riding, and experiencing the local nature BC and Nova Scotia have to offer.

Copyright Law 101-An Overview for Artists: 03 March 2023

Join entertainment lawyers Matthew Gorman and Byron Pascoe as they provide a comprehensive overview of copyright law basics, along with practical implications and considerations for artists in various creative disciplines, whether professional or not. The discussion covers topics such as protecting intellectual property, avoiding legal pitfalls, and understanding the legal rights and responsibilities of artists.

About Byron Pascoe

As an Entertainment Lawyer, Byron understands creative businesses, and how to provide value to creative clients.

One of his main areas of focus is music law, working with recording artists, producers, composers, managers, music service businesses, and festivals. He is involved in the music scene and focuses on professional development, to help creators understand the business of their craft.

A former producer of TV and digital content, Byron also works with creators of animated shorts to social documentaries to scripted films, and everything in between, as producers navigate financing and production related legal matters.

Based in Ottawa, Byron works with clients across Canada. He is also an active volunteer with the national network of legal clinics for the arts. For more information about Byron and his team at Edwards Creative Law, please visit www.edwardslaw.ca

About Matthew Gorman

Matthew Gorman is an entertainment lawyer. His clients include performers, songwriters, producers, managers, music publishers, record labels, theatres, authors, social media influencers, and dynamic entertainment and digital businesses.

Heavily involved in the music community, Matthew is an elected member of Music Nova Scotia’s Board of Directors, a frequent writer, lecturer and speaker on music related legal issues at conferences and events all over the country, and is a member of the International Association of Entertainment Lawyers. Matt also operates Ocean Town Music, which provides business advisory and management services to music clients.

Matthew played music long before becoming a lawyer, which helps inform his practice every day. Outside the office, Matt loves to play drums, piano, and guitar.

For more information about Matthew, please visit Cox & Palmer Law.com

Artists and Their Muses: Prenuptial, Cohabitation and Marriage Contracts over Coffee: 09 March 2023

This free event features Kathleen Adams (she/her), who specializes in family law, and is based in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia.

In this webinar, you’ll discover:

  • The benefits of domestic contracts for Canadian artists
  • Essential clauses to include in a domestic contract to protect your art business
  • How to negotiate a fair domestic contract with your partner
  • Real-life examples of how domestic contracts have protected Canadian artists’ assets

Kathleen has extensive experience in working with artists and understands the unique challenges Canadian artists face in protecting their art businesses. She’ll provide practical tips and information to help you navigate the process of implementing a domestic contract that works for you and your partner.

This webinar is open to all artists, including visual artists, musicians, filmmakers, and others. Whether you’re single, cohabitating, engaged, or married this webinar will provide you with valuable knowledge to take with you and incorporate into your plans for expansion. Don’t miss out on this excellent opportunity to gain a better understanding of domestic contracts tailored to artists’ needs.

About Kathleen Adams

Kathleen Adams (she/her) has worked and volunteered in the arts and entertainment industry for almost fifteen years and holds a Master of Arts in Art History from Queen’s University. She is delighted to share her art and family law knowledge with established and emerging artists across the Atlantic provinces and Canada.

For more information about Kathleen, please visit: