Wedding & Event Vendor Law 101


Re-Broadcast on May 8, 2018

CLE Credits earned: 2 GEN

With the average cost of a wedding skyrocketing, the wedding and event industry is growing exponentially, yet many wedding and event vendors don’t receive the counsel and guidance needed to avoid industry pitfalls and operate a successful business. A mix of small business law and intellectual property law, this CLE will focus on how to advise wedding and event vendor clients, with special attention paid to event planners, photographers, wedding venues, florists, and small baking operations.

This course is co-sponsored by the Federal Bar Association.

Key topics to be discussed:

•   Planners
•   Photographers
•   Florists
•   Venues
•   Caterers/ Bakeries
•   Employees vs. Independent Contractors

Date / Time: May 8, 2018

•   2:00 pm – 4:00 pm Eastern
•   1:00 pm – 3:00 pm Central
•   12:00 pm – 2:00 pm Mountain
•   11:00 am – 1:00 pm Pacific

Choose a format:

•   Live Video Broadcast/Re-Broadcast: Watch Program “live” in real-time, must sign-in and watch program on date and time set above. May ask questions during presentation via chat box. Qualifies for “live” CLE credit.
•   On-Demand Video: Access CLE 24/7 via on-demand library and watch program anytime. Qualifies for self-study CLE credit. On-demand versions are made available 7 business days after the original recording date.

All Access Pass: Before you buy, access this class and all other myLawCLE programs, over 120 new live classes every year, for only $69 dollars per month. Purchase the All Access Pass first. Click here for more information.


caroline_foxCaroline J. Fox, Esq. is an attorney based in Richmond, Virginia. Her practice focuses on the needs of small businesses, with special emphasis on the design, creative, and technology industries.

Caroline joined The Creekmore Law Firm PC in 2015 after running her own solo practice. She earned her Juris Doctor at the University of Richmond School of Law after graduating cum laude from Elon University. She is the recipient of the Auzville Jackson Award for Excellence in Intellectual Property Law.

Born in Easton, MD, Caroline’s interests include yoga, wetland conservation, animals of all kinds, and supporting the arts.

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Section I. Overview
a) Wedding Industry stats
b) What makes wedding vendors different?
        i. Many first time business owners
        ii. Collaboration is the name of the game
        iii. Contracts can’t be too “legal” because it scares brides/ grooms
                • How to address through formatting, word choice, tone
        iv. Other businesses, even owners themselves sometimes don’t take themselves seriously.  You need to convince them they are a business like any other, and need to take precautions!
b) Business setup checklist
        i. Business entity analysis
        ii. Name and DBA
        iii. Zoning
        iv. Business Licenses

Section II. Planners
a) If something goes wrong, the bride will look to you first!
b) DETAILED scope of work
        i. Who, what, when, where, why, how many
        ii. Use of apps to modify contracts:  Why, recommendations
c) “House Rules” limiting ability to decorate/ execute a styling
d) “Feed Me” clauses
e) Travel
f) Model release
        i. Not just for photogs!
        ii. Image and likeness for advertising, trade, promotion, in any and all future media
g) Pictures of wedding from photographer
        i. How to get them, how to use them in portfolio
h) Liquidated damages: How to explain to clients, how to set up in vendor contracts
i) Cancellation and force majeure clauses

Section III. Photographers
a) Copyright law 101 (17 U.S.C.)
        i. “Works made for hire” by employees vs. works done by independent contractors
b) How to grant use of a copyright
        i. Copyright transfer agreements
c) Social Media and the right to reproduction and derivative works
d) Model releases and how to do them
e) “No specific images” clause
f) Styled shootsWho is responsible for what?
        i. Public places and locations that require a license
        ii. Who is liable if something goes wrong?
        iii. Who owns the copyright?
        iv. Attribution: it’s not the answer!
g) Limiting recovery in instance of film or technology malfunction

Section IV. Florists
a) Taking flowers across state lines
        i. Check laws and regulations through the National Plant Board
        ii. Tip: Plants that are shipped bare-rooted are subject to less restrictions than those rooted in soil. (Soil can harbor pests.)

Section V. Venues
a) Insurance
        i. Venue insurance AND insurance for the event via the wedding couple (can be purchased online!)
b) Open flames
c) Recent buzz around sparklers, how to address
d) Dealing with unruly guests

Section VI. Caterers/Bakeries
a) Commercial Kitchens
b) Cottage Food laws
c) How to deal with FDA

Section VII. Employees vs. Independent Contractors
a) What classifies someone as an employee?
b) What classifies someone as an independent contractor?
d) Growing scrutiny from the IRS, Department of Labor, and what it means for your business