Before You Sign | 10 Red Flags

16 August 2019 Before

As you know, we are keen to see your contracts before you sign them and to hear if you are having difficulties with agents, publishers, producers or event organisers. Even if you don’t want to do anything about it, telling us about any of these issues means we can keep ahead of industry trends, comment on a no-names basis to the other party, warn others, and campaign for change.

As well as sending us your contracts to vet or comment on, below are 10 things you should bring to our attention.


10 red flags

  • Publishers or agents who ask you for money or to pay towards any costs of publication, donate royalties or share prize money.
  • Competition terms which take your rights other than a non-exclusive right limited in time to publish a winning piece.
  • Failure to credit you as author or creator.
  • Persistent late payment of royalties or failure to give royalty statements.
  • Failure to provide information on print-runs, sales and (if relevant) stock levels, when requested.
  • Requests from festivals to donate payments.
  • Any rude or unprofessional communications.
  • Failure to respond to communications in a timely manner.
  • Refusal to revert rights for out-of-commerce works.
  • Notifications that a publisher is going out of business or communications from liquidators, receivers or administrators.


Ask our advisors

If you have any queries about contracts or something doesn’t seem right to you – no matter how simple the question – contact us. It is better to come to us for clear advice than be tied to a contract or terms and conditions that are not in your favour.

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