Artists’ unions have the legal status of associations, which means they have the right to conduct their own economic activities. Many unions use this right to run their own galleries. Throughout the 1990s, the situation of unions/associations deteriorated due to “the pains” of market transformation and the fact that they no longer received subsidies from the state budget. Some associations have re-adjusted to the new market requirements and are able to continue operating. Many of the associations are engaged in the distribution of royalties.
In the newly planned Act on the Rights of the Professional Artist, trade unions will have a special task. As representative organisations, they will confirm whether a given artist is entitled to the rights resulting from being a professional artist.