MODELING Contracts – 4 Types of Modeling Contracts (2024)

Modeling contracts is like you’re doing an agreement with a modeling agency for a year or it depends on the agency; how many years the agency wants to do an agreement with you.

Each and every modeling agency has a different way of doing things, and each modeling agency has its own rules and regulations. Here we want to break down the four main types of modeling contracts that most models sign.

There are generally four main types of modeling contracts in the modeling industry; here we are going to explain the four types of modeling contracts.

Also Read : Modeling in Japan – How to Get Scouted for Modeling in Japan

What is the Things Modeling Contracts Includes?

What is the things modeling contracts includes

Most of the modeling contracts are similar, but every agency has their different ways of doing, different rules and regulations. If you’re going to sign a modeling contract with an agency, before that do your research and even before sign the contract; read the contract and understand the contract.

A modeling contract will include such a thing that we are given below, if the modeling contract doesn’t include a thing like below, you should inquire about; why and get the answers before you sign the contract.

  • The contract length (how many years this contract will be)
  • how the models earning would be divided between the agency and the models (how much percentage will keep agency)
  • the agency will give the work worldwide or only for domestic
  • the model can represent by other agencies at the same time or not
  • If the models have to maintain the physical appearance or not
  • the modeling contract include such taxes information
  • the model’s other expenses like, traveling bills, accommodation bills, food bills and more, will be paid by agency or models.

Common 04 Types of Modeling Contracts (2024)

Before you sign the contract, be aware of what type of contract you are going to sign, that contract is best for you or not because each contract has important different information.

There are generally four main types of modeling contracts in the fashion industry: mother agency contract, non-exclusive contract, exclusive contract, and one-time-only contract.

01. Mother Agency Modeling Contract

In the beginning of your career, you will start working on your mother Agency contract; you might be thinking what exactly is a mother agency and how do they actually work?

The mother agency is like literally your first agent as a model. This is the first agent that you sign with, for example; a mother agency is in your city where you get signed first and what they actually do is that they partner with bigger agencies across the world.

They might partner with bigger agencies like Elites Models or Wilhelmina models and get their models signed and get them jobs in other cities around the world.

The mother agency in your city could get their models to work in New York, Paris, Milan and other cities around the world. That’s why their mother agency is that; when they extend their modeling contracts to other agencies and other cities.

They actually still get in a percentage of that modeling Contract or whatever jobs the model books in overseas. The mother agency still gets their commission.

For example:  If you are a model and you sign a mother agency contract, if your mother agency gets you into a bigger agency or a different agency in another city, you’re actually going to be paying 20% Commission to both agencies.

Typically, if you’re just working with your mother agency; you would only pay 20% to your agency, but now since you’re working with two agencies, maybe one locally and one abroad.

If the one abroad gets you work, you’re gonna pay both of your agents. So, you’re losing about 40% Commission and you’re keeping 60% the centerpiece for yourself. That’s sort of how a mother agency works and that’s sort of how the contract goes.

02. Non – Exclusive Modeling Contract

Non – Exclusive Modeling contract

The next type of modeling contracts is a non-exclusive contract, and this is a contract that could actually work in the models favor, because it gives you the flexibility to sign with other agencies.

For example; you signed to one model Agency, but you signed on a non-exclusive contract, this gives you the flexibility to sign with other agencies.

That way you don’t feel like you’re tied down and you can only stick and work with one Agency, you can sign to different agencies for different purposes like commercial, print, high fashion, editorial and more.

That’s the benefit of a non-exclusive modeling contracts and that’s kind of how it goes.

03. Exclusive Modeling Contract

The next type of modeling contract is an exclusive contract, typically when you sign an exclusive contract, the agencies were signing for like a one-year exclusive or a two-year exclusive. This kind of works in your favour, if it’s a bigger agency like for example;

When you are in metro cities, you were signed to an exclusive contract with one model agency and this kind of worked in your favour, because they were getting you a lot of work.

There were almost no opportunities to even look at other agencies because you were working and going out to lots. It’s a good idea to sign an exclusive contract if it’s a bigger agency.

If it’s a smaller agency, you might want to think about it. We are not saying it’s necessarily a bad idea to sign an exclusive contract with them, but just make sure that they’re actually pushing you and like getting you out and getting you seen by clients.

04. One-Time-Only Modeling Contract

The last type of modeling contract that models can sign is a one-time-only Contract; a one-time-only contract is kind of self-explanatory.

For example, if a client is specifically looking for models with gap-toothed, but the agency doesn’t have any models with a gap-toothed on their board.

They might go out and do some casting on their own or try to find some models with gap-toothed, once they find you, they might book you for the job but they will sign you to a one-time-only contract, just to test how you perform.

If you perform well and then if they can get you other jobs as well. They might convert your full time contracts, you a full contract like a one-year exclusive or non-exclusive.

That’s kind of what a one-time-only contract is. It’s on a per job basis and it can always convert to something else if you did impressive jobs.


The thing to note is that with these contracts, model contracts usually pay anywhere from ten, Fifteen or twenty percent commission to your agents.

The twenty percent is usually the max that’s normal. When you get paid usually the clients pay your agency; your agency takes out their twenty percent and then they cut you a check, so that’s kind of how it goes.

If you choose any of the contracts, make sure that you are comfortable with your decision. Always make sure to do your full research and read the contract carefully. Make sure that you are signing with a reputed modeling agency, where they can work with international brands.

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