Scottsdale, AZ asked in Copyright for Arizona

Q: Can past client ask to remove pictures we took of their backyard with only the furniture in it?

We made custom furniture for a client, named collection after her, took pictures of final product in their backyard. Year later customer asking to remove those pictures from our web site and social media accounts, as she says it invades her privacy. The client's last name or location of the property is not mentioned.

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2 Lawyer Answers
John Espinosa
John Espinosa
  • Lowell, MA

A: Maybe. Read this helpful resource on the subject:

Jason Brooks
Jason Brooks
  • Intellectual Property Lawyer
  • los angeles, CA

A: Technically, you're right, in that there is no use of the homeowner's likeness, or any other personally identifiable information; with that said, if they really are bent on pursuing a lawsuit against you, you'll be forced to defend yourself at the unnecessary expense of your time and money. You'd be right by standing your ground, but doing so comes with the risk of being served with a legal Compaint.

Generally if a client intends on using photos of their completed work on their business website or social platforms, for portfolio reasons or otherwise, I always recommend including such language in the service agreement, just so theres no misunderstandings and to avoid this exact situation after-the-fact. If it's not too much of a burden, I'd just remove the photos so you don't find yourselves the defendants of a frivolous lawsuit, or in the alternative, maybe offer these homeowners a very minimal amount of money (i.e. $50 or so?) in exchange for the right to continue using the photos in your portfolio.

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