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San Francisco, Sacramento, Los Angeles

Our Mission

California Lawyers for the Arts empowers the creative community by providing education, representation and dispute resolution.

Our Vision

Artists and arts organizations serve as agents of democratic involvement, innovation, and positive social change, and the growth of an empowered arts sector is essential to healthy communities. CLA’s leadership and services strengthen the arts for the benefit of communities throughout California.


8th Annual 
Sunday, July 25, 2015 @ 5 PM
San Francisco, CA

California Lawyers for the Arts invites you to the Eighth Annual Artistic License Awards!

Reception and awards program benefiting California Lawyers for the Arts and celebrating service to the California Arts Community.

University of San Francisco
Fromm Hall
Saturday, July 25, 2015
5:00 pm to 7:30 pm


San Francisco Board of Supervisors President London Breed

Steven Hirsch and Katherine Lovett of the Law Firm of Keker & Van Nest, LLP

Deborah Santana of the Do a Little Fund

The Hancock Family Funds

Dr. Lawrence Brewster of the University of San Francisco and the William James Association

Breaking News:

Resale Royalties for Visual Artists

In the lawsuit of Sam Francis Foundation and others against Christie's, Sotheby's and EBay for failure to pay royalties under the California Resale Royalty Act, the Ninth Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals has held that the Act can be severed. In its recent decision, the Ninth Circuit of the US Court of Appeals found the CRRA constitutional for in-state resales of unique works of visual arts, but unconstitutional for out of state sales based on the "dormant" Commerce Clause theory.

In a law review article published in the Cybaris Intellectual Property Law Review, CLA Executive Director Alma Robinson makes the case for federal legislation, which would allow US artists to receive resale royalties in more than 70 countries around the world.

California Lawyers for the Arts and the William James Association, in collaboration with the University of San Francisco, are presenting a unique national conference:

Arts in Corrections:  Opportunities for Justice and Rehabilitation

June 16 to 19, 2015

University of San Francisco, 2130 Fulton St, San Francisco, CA

This conference will provide a robust review of current trends in arts in corrections, including an overview of public policy, funding strategies, evaluation methods, and legislative trends.  Special features include a one-day training program on Tuesday, June 16 with experienced practitioners for artists who are new to the field, opportunities to build out the structure for a national coalition, and a showcase of the arts at San Quentin State Prison in Marin County on Friday, June 19.

SPOTLIGHT ON THE ARTS, a program of California Lawyers for the Arts, provides exposure to the arts and employment for low income high school students ages 14-17 who reside in neighborhoods throughout San Francisco. In 2014-2015 our new cohort of youth have chosen to team up with the community focused art organization, 14 Black Poppies, to develop a collaborative art project:  an exhibition,You Belong Here, that showcases a transdisciplinary and cross-platform investigation into belonging. The project will culminate April 11 during an event that is open to the public. We have raised $2,200 and we are seeking to raise $5,000 more.

Here is the link:

In 2013, CLA's SPOTLIGHT ON THE ARTS program provided a platform for teens who were harassed by San Francisco police officers to describe their experiences in a short video, What If This Happened To You?. The teens in this program learned interviewing techniques, as well as sound and camera techniques, under the direction of CLA's Spotlight on the Arts program staff.  They also interviewed a knowledgeable attorney about how they should respond in such situations.

A short essay describing the background of the making of this video with links to descriptions of relevant research is posted on our blog HERE.

Upcoming events

Wednesday, May 27, 2015 7:00 PM • Wells Fargo Building, 2140 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley, CA 94704
Thursday, May 28, 2015 6:30 PM • Sacramento Business Journal 1400 X Street Sacramento 95818
Tuesday, June 02, 2015 11:30 AM • The Avid Reader at Tower; 1600 Broadway, Sacramento, CA 95818
Thursday, June 04, 2015 11:00 AM • Online - Connect from the Internet wherever you are!
Tuesday, June 09, 2015 7:00 PM • Ken Edwards Center, 1527 4th St., Santa Monica, CA 90401
Thursday, June 11, 2015 7:00 PM • Wells Fargo Building, 2140 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley, CA 94704
Tuesday, June 16, 2015 • University of San Francisco, 2130 Fulton St, San Francisco, CA
Thursday, June 18, 2015 11:00 AM • View on the Internet wherever you are!
Saturday, June 20, 2015 9:00 AM • Avenue 50 Studio, 131 N. Avenue 50, Los Angeles, CA 90042
Monday, June 22, 2015 7:00 PM • SmithHouse Tap and Grill, 10351 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90025
Wednesday, June 24, 2015 7:00 PM • Wells Fargo Building, 2140 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley, CA 94704
Tuesday, June 30, 2015 11:00 AM • View on the Internet wherever you are!
Saturday, July 25, 2015 5:00 PM • Fromm Hall, University of San Francisco, 2497 Golden Gate Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94118


July 1, 2013 to June 30, 2014

In our 39th fiscal year:

1,135 persons were members of California Lawyers for the Arts

823 clients received legal assistance from our attorney panel

2009 persons attended 90 C.L.A. educational programs
1,463 individuals and organizations participated in alternative dispute resolution services
61 persons received mediation training

57 deserving teens were placed in arts internships and attended 14 job readiness workshops

Our website averaged 15,165 pageviews per month with visitors from 127 countries.

Order "The Art of Deduction" workbook today!

$19.99 + tax + shipping.

Also available online soon as 
an ebook!

Call Toll-Free: 888-775-8995

Or visit the Lawyer Referral Service page, 
or use the online Lawyer Referral Request Form

CLA is a State Bar Certified Lawyer Referral Services -- No. 0021

As a member of C.L.A., you are supporting and participating in a dynamic service organization, providing vital links to other community sectors and current issues affecting the arts as well as quality legal services and educational programs. 

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California Lawyers for the Arts is a tax exempt 501(c)(3) organization & your donation is tax deductible as a charitable contribution to the fullest extent of the law. 

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