I was asked recently to assemble a post about Work for Hire contracts to give artists and students the opportunity to read about this process and educate themselves before entering into one with a client. Generally it's considered a bad idea for an artist to sign a Work for Hire contract because it strips the artist of all rights and claim of ownership. There are exceptions of course, and ultimately it's up to you whether you sign it or decline it, but you should know what you're getting into. Let's start with a good 'ol Wikipedia definition of a Work for Hire Contract. Now let's take a look at an essay by Attorney Lloyd J. Jassin titled, Working with Freelancers: The Work for Hire Doctrine. In it, he represents the client hiring the freelance artist. Now for the artists point of view: Photographers should check out this primer on Work for Hire contacts by ASMP (The American Society of Media Photographers), while Illustrators and Designers can review this article, What does "Work for Hire" mean for designers? by AIGA, the professional association for design.