ArtsLaw Information Sheet
Instructions and Notes.
Set out above is a sample letter of demand. You will see where you need to insert your relevant information; however you may also need to amend the letter to suit your needs. For example, if the recipient is not only infringing your moral rights but has also infringed your copyright, you may need to combine elements from the sample letter of demand on copyright –
The following are some changes you may need to make to suit your particular case.
- You will need to think about what 'remedies' or corrective actions to include in the fourth paragraph. These will depend on your particular work and how your moral rights have been infringed. They may include:
- a demand that the recipient cease infringing your rights immediately ;
- a public apology be made for the infringement;
- a printed correction acknowledging the failure to attribute you and stating that you are the creator of the work;
- changes to an exhibition or presentation or recall of a publication that is derogatory to your work and reputation;
- damages for loss resulting from the infringement; and/or
- a demand that any false attribution of authorship, or derogatory treatment, of the work be removed or reversed.
- Try and make your demands as clear as possible so that the reader understands what you want and there is no confusion.
- There is a good chance that if someone is infringing your moral rights, they may also be infringing your copyright. If you believe that copyright has also been infringed you may wish to adapt your letter to address this and add demands to rectify this problem. For further information on copyright please go to the Australian Copyright Council website.
Sample letter of demand for moral rights infringement
Dear Sir/Madam [or name of the person if known]
I am the creator of [insert name or description of work, for example "the documentary film entitled 'ABC for Artists' shown on free-to-air television in Australia in February 2008"] (the Work).
As creator of the Work, I have the following moral rights under Australian law:
a. the right to be attributed as creator of the Work;
b. the right against false attribution; and
c. the right of integrity, to prevent derogatory treatment of my Work.
I have noticed that you have [insert way in which they have breached your moral rights. For example "you have failed to attribute me as the creator of the artwork which you have used in your exhibition on the 17th May 2007"].
[Attach an example if possible showing the breach - for example, a copy of an advertisement which shows the Work and does not attribute you as the artist.]
The conduct described above constitutes an infringement of my moral right ['to be attributed', AND/OR 'against false attribution', AND/OR 'of integrity'].
To rectify this infringement of my rights, I require that you undertake to:
[insert your demands as to how you want the reader to rectify the problem. Please see notes below.]
You can confirm your acceptance of these undertakings by signing and dating a copy of this letter and returning it to me within 21 days.
You are now on notice as to my moral rights in respect of the Work. If I do not receive an adequate response within 21 days of this letter, I will take such action as I may be advised in order to protect my rights including, without limitation, legal action for injunctive relief or to recover damages without further notice to you.
I otherwise reserve all my rights.