2006 New York Code - Judicial Approval Of Certain Contracts For Services Of Infants; Effect Of Approval; Guardianship Of Savings.


 
    § 35.03. Judicial  approval  of  certain  contracts  for  services  of
  infants; effect of approval; guardianship of savings.    1.  A  contract
  made  by  an  infant  or made by a parent or guardian of an infant, or a
  contract proposed to be so made,  under  which  (a)  the  infant  is  to
  perform  or  render  services  as  an  actor, actress, dancer, musician,
  vocalist or other performing artist, or as a participant  or  player  in
  professional  sports,  or (b) a person is employed to render services to
  the infant in  connection  with  such  services  of  the  infant  or  in
  connection with contracts therefor, may be approved by the supreme court
  or the surrogate's court as provided in this section where the infant is
  a  resident  of  this  state  or  the  services  of the infant are to be
  performed or rendered in this state. If the contract is so approved  the
  infant  may  not,  either  during  his  minority  or  upon  reaching his
  majority, disaffirm the contract on the ground of infancy or assert that
  the parent or guardian lacked authority to make the contract. A contract
  modified, amended or assigned after  its  approval  under  this  section
  shall be deemed a new contract.
    2.  (a)  Approval  of  the contract pursuant to this section shall not
  exempt any person from any other law with respect to licenses,  consents
  or   authorizations   required  for  any  conduct,  employment,  use  or
  exhibition of the infant in this state, nor  limit  in  any  manner  the
  discretion  of the licensing authority or other persons charged with the
  administration  of  such  requirements,  nor  dispense  with  any  other
  requirement of law relating to the infant.
    (b)  No  contract  shall be approved which provides for an employment,
  use or exhibition of the infant, within or without the state,  which  is
  prohibited by law and could not be licensed to take place in this state.
    (c)  No contract shall be approved unless (i) the written acquiescence
  to such contract of the parent  or  parents  having  custody,  or  other
  person  having custody of the infant, is filed in the proceeding or (ii)
  the court shall find that the infant is emancipated.
    (d) No contract shall be approved if the term during which the  infant
  is to perform or render services or during which a person is employed to
  render  services  to  the  infant,  including  any extensions thereof by
  option or otherwise, extends for a period of more than three years  from
  the  date  of  approval  of  the contract, provided, however that if the
  court finds  that  such  infant  is  represented  by  qualified  counsel
  experienced  with entertainment industry law and practices such contract
  may be for a period of not more than  seven  years.    If  the  contract
  contains any covenant or condition which extends beyond such three years
  or,  where  the  court finds that the infant is represented by qualified
  counsel as provided in this paragraph, seven  years,  the  same  may  be
  approved  if found to be reasonable and for such period as the court may
  determine.
    (e) If the court which  has  approved  a  contract  pursuant  to  this
  section  shall  find that the well-being of the infant is being impaired
  by the performance thereof, it may, at any time during the term  of  the
  contract  during  which  services  are  to be performed by the infant or
  rendered by or to the infant or during the term of any other covenant or
  condition of the contract, either revoke its approval of  the  contract,
  or  declare  such approval revoked unless a modification of the contract
  which the court finds to be appropriate in the circumstances  is  agreed
  upon by the parties and the contract as modified is approved by order of
  the  court.  Application  for an order pursuant to this paragraph may be
  made by the infant, or his  parent  or  parents,  or  guardian,  or  his
  limited  guardian  appointed  pursuant to this section, or by the person
  having the care and custody of the infant,  or  by  a  special  guardian
  appointed  for  the  purpose  by  the court on its own motion. The order
  granting or denying the application shall be made  after  hearing,  upon
  notice  to  the  parties  to  the  proceeding  in which the contract was
  approved, given in such manner as the court shall direct. Revocation  of
  the  approval  of  the  contract  shall  not  affect any right of action
  existing at the date of  the  revocation,  except  that  the  court  may
  determine  that  a refusal to perform on the ground of impairment of the
  well-being of the infant was justified.
    3. (a) The court may withhold its approval of the contract  until  the
  filing  of  consent by the parent or parents entitled to the earnings of
  the infant, or of the infant if he is entitled to his own earnings, that
  a part of the infant's net earnings for services performed  or  rendered
  during  the  term  of the contract be set aside and saved for the infant
  pursuant to the order of the court and under guardianship as provided in
  this section, until he attains his majority or until  further  order  of
  the   court.   Such  consent  shall  not  be  deemed  to  constitute  an
  emancipation of the infant.
    (b) The court shall fix the amount or proportion of net earnings to be
  set aside as it deems for the best interests  of  the  infant,  and  the
  amount  or  proportion  so  fixed  may,  upon subsequent application, be
  modified in the discretion of  the  court,  within  the  limits  of  the
  consent  given  at  the  time  the contract was approved. In fixing such
  amount or proportion, consideration shall  be  given  to  the  financial
  circumstances  of  the parent or parents entitled to the earnings of the
  infant and to the needs of their other children, or  if  the  infant  is
  entitled to his own earnings and is married, to the needs of his family.
  Unless  the  infant  is at the time thereof entitled to his own earnings
  and has no dependents, the court shall not condition its approval of the
  contract upon consent to the setting aside of an amount or proportion in
  excess of one-half of the net earnings.
    (c) For the purposes of this subdivision, net earnings shall mean  the
  gross earnings received for services performed or rendered by the infant
  during the term of the contract, less (i) all sums required by law to be
  paid  as  taxes to any government or subdivision thereof with respect to
  or by reason of such earnings; (ii) reasonable sums to be  expended  for
  the  support,  care,  education, training and professional management of
  the infant; and (iii) reasonable fees and expenses paid or to be paid in
  connection with the proceeding, the contract and its performance.
    4. (a) A proceeding for the approval of a contract shall be  commenced
  by verified petition of the guardian of the infant's person or property,
  or of the infant, or of a parent, or of any interested person, or of any
  relative  of  the  infant  on  his behalf. If a guardian of the infant's
  person or property has been appointed or qualified in  this  state,  the
  petition  shall  be  made  to  the court by which he was appointed or in
  which he qualified. If there is no such guardian, the petition shall  be
  made  to  the  supreme  court  or the surrogate's court in the county in
  which the infant resides, or if he is not a resident of  the  state,  in
  any county in which the infant is to be employed under the contract.
    (b)  The  following  persons,  other than one who is the petitioner or
  joins in the petition, shall be served with an order or citation to show
  cause why the petition should not be granted: (i) the  infant,  if  over
  the  age  of  fourteen  years,  (ii)  his guardian or guardians, if any,
  whether or not appointed or qualified in this state; (iii) each party to
  the contract; (iv) the parent or parents of the infant; (v)  any  person
  having the care and custody of the infant; (vi) the person with whom the
  infant  resides; and (vii) if it appears that the infant is married, his
  spouse. Service shall be made in such manner as the court shall  direct,
  at  least eight days before the time at which the petition is noticed to
  be heard, unless the court shall fix a shorter time.
    5. The petition shall have annexed a complete copy of the contract  or
  proposed contract and shall set forth:
    (a) The full name, residence and date of birth of the infant;
    (b)  The  name  and  residence of any living parent of the infant, the
  name and residence of the person who has care and custody of the infant,
  and the name and residence of the person with whom the infant resides;
    (c) Whether the infant has had at any time  a  guardian  appointed  by
  will or deed or by a court of any jurisdiction;
    (d)  Whether  the infant is a resident of the state, or if he is not a
  resident,  that  the  petition  is  for  approval  of  a  contract   for
  performance  or rendering of services by the infant and the place in the
  state where the services are to be performed or rendered;
    (e) A brief statement as to the infant's employment  and  compensation
  under the contract or proposed contract;
    (f)  (i)  A  statement  that the term of the contract during which the
  infant is to perform or render services or  during  which  a  person  is
  employed  to  render services to the infant can in no event extend for a
  period of more than three  years  from  the  date  of  approval  of  the
  contract,  and  (ii) an enumeration of any other covenants or conditions
  contained in the contract which extend beyond  such  three  years  or  a
  statement  that  the  contract  contains  no  such  other  covenants  or
  conditions;
    (g) A statement as to who is entitled to the infant's earnings and, if
  the infant  is  not  so  entitled,  facts  regarding  the  property  and
  financial circumstances of the parent or parents who are so entitled;
    (h)  The facts with respect to any previous application for the relief
  sought in the petition or similar relief with respect to the infant;
    (i) A schedule showing the infant's gross earnings, estimated  outlays
  and  estimated  net  earnings  as  defined  in subdivision three of this
  section;
    (j) The interest  of  the  petitioner  in  the  contract  or  proposed
  contract or in the infant's performance under it;
    (k) Such other facts regarding the infant, his family and property, as
  show  that  the  contract  is  reasonable and provident and for the best
  interests of the infant.
    If no guardian of the property of the infant  has  been  appointed  or
  qualified   in  this  state,  the  petition  shall  also  pray  for  the
  appointment of a limited guardian as provided in  subdivision  seven  of
  this  section.    The  petition may nominate a person to be appointed as
  such limited guardian, setting forth reasons why  the  person  nominated
  would  be  a  proper  and  suitable  person  to  be appointed as limited
  guardian and setting forth the interest of the person  so  nominated  in
  the  contract  or proposed contract or in the infant's performance under
  it.
    6. At any time after the filing of the petition the court, if it deems
  it advisable, may appoint a special guardian to represent the  interests
  of the infant.
    7.  If  a guardian of the property of the infant has been appointed or
  qualified in this state, he shall receive  and  hold  any  net  earnings
  directed  by  the  court  to  be set aside for the infant as provided in
  subdivision three. In  any  other  case  a  limited  guardian  shall  be
  appointed  for  such  purpose. A parent, guardian or other petitioner is
  not ineligible to be appointed as limited  guardian  by  reason  of  his
  interest  in  any  part  of  the infant's earnings under the contract or
  proposed contract or by reason of the fact that he  is  a  party  to  or
  otherwise  interested  in  the  contract  or in the infant's performance
  under the contract, provided such interest is disclosed.
    If the contract is approved and if  the  court  shall  direct  that  a
  portion  of  the  net  earnings  be set aside as provided in subdivision
  three of this section, the limited guardian shall qualify in the  manner
  provided  with  respect  to  a  general  guardian of the property of the
  infant  appointed  by the court in which the proceeding is had, and with
  respect to net earnings ordered to be set aside shall be subject to  all
  provisions applicable to a general guardian so appointed.
    If  a guardian of the property of the infant is appointed or qualifies
  after the appointment of a limited guardian, the  limited  guardian  may
  continue  to act with respect to earnings under the contract approved by
  the court until the termination of the contract; upon  such  termination
  he  shall transfer to the guardian of the infant's property the funds of
  the infant in his hands.
    8. (a) The infant shall attend personally before the  court  upon  the
  hearing  of  the  petition. Upon such hearing, and upon such proof as it
  deems necessary and advisable,  the  court  shall  make  such  order  as
  justice and the best interests of the infant require.
    (b)  The  court  at  such hearing or on an adjournment thereof may, by
  order:
    (i) determine any issue  arising  from  the  pleadings  or  proof  and
  required to be determined for final disposition of the matter, including
  issues  with  respect  to  the age or emancipation of the infant or with
  respect to entitlement of any person to his earnings;
    (ii) disapprove the contract or proposed contract or  approve  it,  or
  approve  it  upon  such  conditions, with respect to modification of the
  terms thereof or otherwise, as it shall determine;
    (iii) appoint a limited guardian as provided in subdivision  seven  of
  this section.
    (c)  If  the  contract  is  approved  upon condition of consent that a
  portion of the net earnings of the infant  under  the  contract  be  set
  aside,  the  court shall fix the amount or proportion of net earnings to
  be set aside and if the  court  shall  find  that  consent  or  consents
  thereto  have  been  filed  as  provided  in  subdivision  three of this
  section, shall give  directions  with  respect  to  computation  of  and
  payment of sums to be set aside.


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