Colorado Attorneys for the Arts Provides Attorneys the Opportunity to Help Artists

By Dave Ratner

Colorado’s creative economy is crucial to our state. Colorado Attorneys for the Arts (CAFTA) is a valuable new program connecting artists and arts organizations with volunteer lawyers providing pro bono services. CAFTA is recruiting attorneys!

CAFTA provides a unique opportunity for attorneys to work directly with Colorado’s creative community by helping artists, cultural nonprofits and creative businesses that are unable to pay with a variety of legal issues. Our local quality of life, regional economic development and national reputation rely on a vibrant creative sector. These potential pro bono clients are weaving the cultural fabric of Colorado. CAFTA connects low-income artists and arts organizations with volunteer lawyers providing pro bono legal services on specific, arts-related matters such as:

  • Copyright and Trademark Protection
  • Artist Contracts (e.g. with Agents, Managers, Promoters, Galleries, Exhibitors, etc.)
  • Landlord/Tenant for Creative and Studio Space
  • Formation of Arts Nonprofit Organizations
  • Employment and Labor Related to Creative Work
  • Corporate, Governance and Business Issues for Organizations and Businesses

The creative industries are shaping the culture and commerce of our state. A thriving, professional arts community results in increased economic development, job creation, tourism and higher quality of life for Coloradans. And your legal expertise is a valuable resource to Colorado’s creative economy.

In the Denver metro area alone, arts, cultural and scientific nonprofit organizations generated $1.85 billion in economic activity according to the Colorado Business Committee for the Arts (CBCA) 2014 study. In addition, a recent report from the National Endowment for the Arts ranks Colorado number one in the country for theater, dance, concert and museum attendance.

Yet there is plenty of truth to the “starving artist” moniker. Creative individuals constantly face barriers to professionalize their work and grow their careers. Booking gigs, finding space to exhibit artwork, creating original compositions, rehearsing performances, and producing films does not leave much time or funds to navigate legal issues.

The bottom line is that these creative professionals who are contributing to Colorado’s cultural renaissance are often unable to afford market rate legal services. And that legal support is crucial to the viability and success of their artistic careers.

The Colorado Rules of Professional Conduct suggest that every lawyer provide at least fifty hours of pro bono services each year. CAFTA offers a meaningful way to fulfill your pro bono aspirations. By volunteering with CAFTA you can support the creative community, contribute to the creative economy, and further the economic development of our state. Volunteering through CAFTA provides opportunities for every type of attorney.

  • Work with new, interesting and exciting clients
  • Apply your practice to different and thought-provoking matters
  • Perform meaningful work that makes a difference in the lives of artists and/or arts organizations
  • Contribute your valuable skills to Colorado’s growing arts & creative sectors
  • Provide for the pro bono hours you always aspire to achieve
  • Learn about the Colorado arts sector and its distinct legal needs
  • Connect with the creative community through work with artists, cultural nonprofits and creative businesses

CAFTA is actively seeking attorneys to be part of this program. Signing up as a CAFTA volunteer attorney is not a commitment to take on any particular matter or client. CAFTA attorneys will be regularly provided with a list of available matters and can decide what best fits their expertise and availability.


Register to be a CAFTA Volunteer Attorney Today! CLICK HERE for the application.

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