Susan Benton

CONTACT

Tel: 214-273-3710
sbenton@vernonlawgroup.com

EDUCATION

  • Southern Methodist University (Ph.D. 2013, Anthropology)
  • Southern Methodist University (M.A. 2009, Anthropology)
  • Southern Methodist University Dedman School of Law (J.D., 1987)
  • Southern Methodist University (B.A., B.B.A 1984)

LANGUAGES

  • French

Susan Benton is an attorney with a profound understanding of the law behind art, entertainment, and cultural property and heritage. In addition to her Intellectual Property practice, Susan has helped indigenous peoples with restitution of their cultural artifacts, and is an assistant professor of arts and law at Southern Methodist University.

For over twenty years, Susan has represented clients such as art collectors, museums, singers, and television studios, directing them through complex issues of contract, copyright, trademark, import/export, and acquisition.  Susan was appointed guardian ad litem for Destiny’s Child and LeAnn Rimes during the production of their first major label recording contracts.  She also acted as counsel for a video game company during the creation and development of all associated intellectual property, dealing with trademark and copyright issues.  Susan advised a European collector in the acquisition of major works of Impressionist art from New York dealers, which required comprehensive knowledge of authenticity and title, contract drafting and negotiations, and coordination of international tax.

Susan has a deep interest in Anthropology and Archaeology and has counseled a major U.S. museum on legal issues relating to an ongoing, fractional donation of Native American objects to the museum.  She also advised a U.S. museum on potential claims for repatriation of Native American antiquities in its collection.  Her love of ancient antiquities and the issues surrounding them led her back to seek her Master’s degree and Ph.D. in Anthropology at Southern Methodist University.

Additionally, Susan has taught on the subjects of art and cultural heritage law at Southern Methodist University and Texas Wesleyan School of Law.  She chaired of the Repatriation Committee for the Society for American Archaeology and has served as a research team member and committee co-chair for the Intellectual Property in Cultural Heritage international task force and a board member of the Society for Advanced Research on the Human Experience.

Bar & Court Admissions

  • State Bar of Texas