What is a model release form?

What is a model release form?
Posted on Monday 20th of February 2023
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A model release form is a legal document often used in photography to obtain permission from a model or subject to use their image for commercial or promotional purposes, or further define how content may or may not be used. Once signed, it is a legally binding agreement between the photographer and the model, and it outlines the terms and conditions of how the image can be used.

The model release form typically includes the following information:

  • The name and contact information of the photographer and model
  • The date the photos were taken
  • The specific ways in which the images will be used, including any limitations or restrictions
  • The compensation or other benefits the model will receive in exchange for their participation
  • Any relevant copyright or intellectual property information
  • Signatures from the photographer and model to indicate their agreement to the terms of the release form.

The importance of a model release varies from country to country. For example, in the UK, the absence of a model release generally and broadly means that the photographer / copyright holder can use the images how and where they like without permission, the release acts more of a restriction of use - despite being named a release. On other countries, a model release is required prior to those images being able to be used.

Before engaging in the modelling world, its never a bad idea to seek legal advice on what documentation is required or advised in the country you're based, and where you wish to distribute your content. 

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