Frequently Asked Questions

From Photographers

  • PhotoClaim most commonly finds infringements that take place on the Internet but we have also successfully found and handled cases involving travel brochures, TV commercials, phone applications and even souvenirs that were sold all over Berlin.
  • You don’t pay us anything for monitoring your portfolio. Only when we are able to get you the money you deserve, we will take a fair share of the recouped damages. If we are able to get an out-of-court settlement, you will receive 65% of the paid damages.
  • The costs of taking a copyright infringement to court depend largely on the jurisdiction in which the proceedings take place. The court fees can vary from 5% of the damages up to several thousand Euros.
  • But no worries, we always try to avoid legal proceedings. They are expensive for the losing party (fortunately, that rarely means us) and time-consuming for both sides. The offending party will receive a Cease & Desist Order to avoid legal proceedings. Only if they choose to ignore it we have to think about further consequences.
  • Whenever legal proceedings at court seem appropriate, we will communicate the potential costs to you. You can rest assured you will always be informed of all possible outcomes.
  • Yes, you can. Although, in order to do so, certain requirements need to be fulfilled: 1) you need to state who purchased a license and 2) confirm the minimum fee in case a potential infringer turns out legal. When these two are covered, then we can set up the case for you.
  • The amount of money you might get back is calculated in accordance with MFM 2018 tables (read more) or the price of the photographer’s standard license if it is higher than MFM. It depends on the number and type of photos. The final reimbursement is also dependent on the way in which the photos were used. Once we set up the case and proceed with the investigation, we calculate the final amount of money that we can get back for you.
  • Yes. We work with both professional and amateur photographers. Due to the technical development and easy access to cameras, nowadays, everyone can be considered as a photographer. Whenever you feel that your photographs might have been stolen, do not hesitate and apply!
  • It usually takes up to two weeks to find out if your photos got stolen.

 

  • We are not allowed to deliver any details or advice concerning legal matters via Facebook. Please send us an email and we will get back to you as soon as possible.
  • Usually, the entire procedure takes around 3-4 months for out of court settlement, but it is hard to estimate the precise amount of time since it is dependent on a couple of different parties.
  • ‘Procedure done’ means that, unfortunately, the negotiations were not successful and the out of court proceeding is finished. The next step is up to the photographer – whether he/she wants to bring the case to the court or not.
  • No. Preparing the documentation does not imply any extra costs for our clients.
  • You can ignore the e-mail or answer the opponent to contact the lawyer (power of attorney was signed). Then our lawyer will take care of further communication with the opponent.
  • Yes. The service is free for our clients.
  • RightsPilot UG provides us with well-secured pieces of evidence which can be essential for both out of court and court proceedings (e.g. we can send screenshots to an opponent upon request). The company can be an additional witness in court, thus it would have a bigger impact than just securing the screenshot on your own. Considering the cost, our clients do not need to pay us directly. We add the amount of 95€ + VAT to pay the costs involved in the matter. So that when it comes to the settlement – opponents cover the cost.

From Photo-Users

  • By using the photo you gained an economical benefit. Beautiful photos can improve your article or product and generate more clicks, more sales, and more visitors to your website. It’s therefore only fair if you pay the photographer their licensing fee.
  • Apart from the fact that it’s the fair thing to do, the law requires you to do so.
  • If you decide not to pay, we’ll have an attorney file a lawsuit against you. Be aware that the lawsuit does not necessarily have to take place in the country in which your company is registered: it can often be held at a place of our convenience.
  • Once you receive a warning stating the potential costs of a lawsuit, it means we have come to the conclusion that a lawsuit is necessary. If you want to avoid those costs, this is your last chance to come to an agreement outside of court.
  • No. It’s not that easy to formulate an order to cease and desist and to secure the necessary evidence. That’s why the law protects the copyright owner insofar as obtaining an attorney’s help and that the opposing party has to reimburse the incurred costs.
  • Yes, you’re right…if you’re in North Korea. Apart from that, there is a high chance that we have a partner attorney also in your place of residence. Furthermore, lawsuits regarding copyright infringements on the Internet can often take place in a country of our convenience.
  • Whilst some photographers run a business selling thousands of photos for a low price, others sell a few unique photos at a much higher price point. To find a fair solution, PhotoClaim usually demands the industry average as compensation for the photographer.
  • If you don’t acknowledge and act on the order to cease and desist, and an attorney files for injunction, then this is what you get. The court orders you to cease and desist, and should you still make the photo publicly available, you will be liable to pay a penalty up to 250,000€ (or up to 6 months jail time).
  • This can be easily prevented by submitting your declaration to cease and desist.
  • Currently, PhotoClaim cooperates with lawyers Filipp J.A. Bickel and Robert Fechner, who also frequently use the e-mail addresses filipp.bickel@photography-defender.com and robert.fechner@photography-defender.com. If you have received a claim via e-mail from those lawyers, you can be almost certain that it is a legitimate claim and not a scam.
  • The amount of money is calculated in accordance with MFM 2018 tables (read more). It depends on the number and type of photos. The final reimbursement is also dependent on the way in which the photos were used.

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