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Alex J.
Alex J., Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 3671
Experience:  Solicitors 2 years plus PQE
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Hi,I think this falls under employment law best, XXXXX XXXXX

Resolved Question:

Hi,

I think this falls under employment law best, XXXXX XXXXX unsure. I've been commissioned to do a piece for TV and last week they came to me and said they wanted to ad subtitles to some of the interview subjects. The subjects came back to me and said they refused to give their consent if subtitles were added and wanted it put in the contract that no such subtitling will occur.

The commissioner has e-mailed me stating that they will not subtitle but refuses to put it in the contract. This has turned into a very hot button topic and I'm not sure I trust anyone at the station to hold up their end of the bargain. I know an email is considered a legal document but I can see it running with subtitles and the commissioner claiming 'he didn't know.' Is there anything else I can do to protect this piece?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Alex J. replied 3 years ago.
Hi,

Thank you for your question and welcome.

If you do include subtitles will the interview subjects sue you?

Does the contract have a clause in it that says it is "the entire agreement between the parties"?

Kind regards

AJ
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Hi. No we won't be sued. It's more of a social justice issue. The woman in question has Cerebral Palsy and slightly dis articulate speech. She does not need subtitles however and feels that using them would send a terrible message to the public. Furthermore she is an actress (never used subtitles in the past) and feels that using subtitles would jepordize her career.

We have not seen the contract as of yet.
Expert:  Alex J. replied 3 years ago.
Hi,

Thank you.

I am afraid I cannot see any way around this.

If you dont get a written guarantee and indemnity from the TV company you are exposing yourself to this lady. She would then just have to prove that considerable harm had been done to her career and could make a claim against you for these damages. A court would have to quantify these.

The botXXXXX XXXXXne is unless this condition is put in the contract then you do not have their consent.

As a practical step I would make sure you show the actors and actresses the acknowledgment from the TV company that they wont use sub titles. I would also get the TV company to confirm that they acknowledge that the actors and actresses used have only given their consent conditional upon sub titles not being used.

Kind regards

AJ

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

We do have written confirmation put in an email from the TV company that subtitles will not be used. Is this of any use?

Expert:  Alex J. replied 3 years ago.
Hi,

Thank you.

Whether it is of use or not really depends on what is contained in the contract. If the contract contains a clause saying "This is the entire agreement between the parties" then you wont be able to rely on that email.

That aside the actors have said that consent is only conditional upon this restriction being in your contract with the tv company. If that is the case you need consent. If you do not have consent and the tv company includes subtitles anyway the actors will be able to sue you and you will be left with a spurious claim against the tv company based on an email.

Have they said why they refuse?

Kind regards

AJ

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