New image rights legislation is set to be introduced in Guernsey by mid 2012 and this will be of benefit for high profile, wealthy individuals to protect their reputation. There may also be tax advantages.

This new legislation will lead the way in recognising Image Rights on a statutory footing and see the introduction of a register of image rights which is a world first.

Image Rights are widely recognised as being a valuable asset especially for sports stars and show business celebrities. The Guernsey legislation is intended to assist in the drafting of commercial agreements and provide clarity.

Those wishing to do so can obtain a registered Guernsey Image Right protecting certain definable aspects such as their name and less tangible characteristics such as gestures, distinctive expressions or other attributes. The legislation will balance the protection of the image rights against other important rights such as freedom of news reporting and public interest.

A Guernsey Image Right may well be registered by a person's estate so that protection is offered to the living and the deceased, for example, in the case of international recording stars, the use of their image may well provide a source of income for their heirs for years to come.

Moore Stephens in the Channel Islands will be able to provide the most appropriate structures for your clients to protect their Image Rights as soon as the legislation is enacted and we will keep you informed as to the progress of the bill. In the meantime, if you have any clients whom you know will benefit from the introduction of the new law, please get in touch with us at the earliest opportunity so that we can discuss what is needed and be prepared as soon as the legislation is enacted.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.