Photographs and Photography Law and Legal Definition

The obligations and liabilities of those engaged in photography, engraving, and portrait painting, in doing work incident to their callings and arising from contracts entered into with those seeking their services, are governed by the general rules of the law of contracts. A photographer or engraver employed to make a photograph or engraving for another has no right, in the absence of an express agreement between the parties, to make copies thereof from the negative or plate for the photographer's or engraver's own use or profit.

Because of the artisitc quality of photography, the use of photographs by others is subject to copyright laws. In order to use copyrighted material, permission by the owner must be granted. Photography may also involve issues of privacy and free speech, such the use of cameras in private areas for security purposes and permitting cameras in the courtroom.