F**k You! Pay me!



excellent talk, very relevant topic

He’s a cool designer too… he was doing some great posters. I’d love to have one

Really good… I’d love to see more of this kind of information regarding the details/pitfalls/tips of running a firm.


Great video, best 30 minutes I’ve spent in a while. Thanks.

Screw the MBA in Design Strategy. I’m going out to get my law degree…

I feel like it’s time to find a lawyer and get my own contract drafted after watching that… getting a CPA for independent projects was a big step and really paid off. Sounds like having a lawyer would be too.


He is a natural!. Didn’t hear a speach like that for a long time.

I’d like to add though, that we had “design law” as part of our advanced studies at
the university. It was basically our dean (at the time) recognising some of the same
old dirty tricks, that many of his students were falling for and he invited a (female)
lawyer on the campus, who gave us a course of a semester much simular to what
you see above.

At the time I didn’t think it was all that serious and important and even wondered
if my time there was spent well.

Hm. Within three years on my first design gig I made my employers hire her…

A then client had put products, that this agency had worked on under the “umbrella”
of an up and comming “brand name designer”. That one didn’t go down well with my
bosses. They had to sue the client and won. But they should have had a better contract
from the beginning.


Great reference…first video I’ve found where I actually took notes.

On a related topic - it seems that I’ve had a hard time finding any good, pre-existing templates for ID contracts. I purposely structure any freelance work I do in such a way that leaves my maximum amount outstanding as a fairly small amount, but it would be interesting if anyone had any references or examples of contracts they’ve provided where the legal section is well defined and easily copied/pasted.

I’m glad that some areas of this I figured out on my own, but some things regarding amending contracts and termination/kill fees I hadn’t thought of.

Good stuff.

This should be required weekly viewing for every design student and design professional.

Have any of you ever hired a lawyer for drafting contracts ? if yes, how did it go (and how much did it cost)?

great video. thanks for posting.

i cobbled mine together from books like business and legal forms for designers, aiga contract, online, everywhere. spent mucho time on it, probably cheaper if i just went to a lawyer.

i wish Montero talked about at what point do you offer your contract, at the quote submission, or after they say your price is ok. i’ve been doing it with the quote submission so the whole thing is tied together, a friend thinks this is a disadvantage because it puts too much info infront of the client, he’s like, hook them with the price, then after you the job submit the contract, but if i was hiring a designer i’d want it all up front.

do you all ask for a deposit up front for jobs over $500?

Yes, I have. It can be pricey, especially if you have them start from scratch. What I ended up doing, is getting samples of contracts from people I know, a boiler plate from my lawyer, and made my own.

Then, I sat had the lawyer scrub it for me. At the end of the day, I learned way more about it, and it turns out, I’m pretty good at making up my own terms :slight_smile:

This was a great find. I am jealous of the creative mornings series since there is not one in Chicago. But sure enough I googled it and it looks like it is coming to Chicago. Has anyone attended these in other cities?

In my process, I do everything I can to not talk about money until I am more than 50% sure I am going to get the job. This can be done through good questioning.

If you do it right, you know the, “if I hit this price, will we move forward” number. When you’re at that point, it is not a difficult discussion to say that you’re going to include your MSA in the email with the quote “for review”.

Yes, always get a deposit, if not full payment/retainer for all jobs. And for longer jobs, have gates where payment is made to move forward with a final hold-back invoice at the end that is swapped with the intellectual property.

thanks, ip_wirelessly, what about doing business with people overseas? Do our contracts hold up internationally? I guess this is where it is lawyer time, so many questions, because today if you try to do some jobs you see over the net, they want to know your fee upfront (not to say this can’t be given just for review) and be adjusted as more questions get answered, but I wonder how you would go about collecting from an ovreseas client you got over the net. I mean sure work smart, get their name, address, verify they are who they say they are, but , humph? any contract tips for the overseas thing?

Time to “Lawyer Up”, my friend.

Does anyone have so basic guidelines with respect to finding a good layer that has experience in this area of work? I’m not just talking contacts, but has some experience working for designers and has some understanding what we do?


Personal Finance 101 was one of the best classes that I took in college… covered mortgages, insurance, investing, and planning. It really should be a required course for all students, especially designers