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Anyone know of a good production insurance resource?


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#1 David Ghast

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Posted 27 February 2009 - 06:09 PM

Is there a good site that explains the insurance situation in small productions? Some of the questions Im having trouble finding answers to are:

1. I rent a house for a few days, does the rental owner's home owner insurance cover any damage done to the property, or do I need some sort of insurance as well? Do I need to inform the owner of all the people who will be on the property? If I need insurance, do i have to list everyone as well?

2. I'm doing a closed door (read: nudity involved) shoot and have opted to have one other person come on as temporary help, do i need to make them an employee, or can i just pay them out of pocket? Is there an issue with insurance if i opt to pay them out of pocket?

3. Do I have to hire post-production people as independent contractors (for this example, assume there is only one), or can i pay them out of pocket as well? Is there any insurance liability if they are working on their own equipment on their own property?

I guess the crux of these questions is to what extent, in very small productions, one can just pay off the actors and help without bringing insurance, W2's, and 1040's into it.
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#2 Bruce Taylor

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Posted 28 February 2009 - 01:37 AM

Is there a good site that explains the insurance situation in small productions? Some of the questions Im having trouble finding answers to are:

1. I rent a house for a few days, does the rental owner's home owner insurance cover any damage done to the property, or do I need some sort of insurance as well? Do I need to inform the owner of all the people who will be on the property? If I need insurance, do i have to list everyone as well?

2. I'm doing a closed door (read: nudity involved) shoot and have opted to have one other person come on as temporary help, do i need to make them an employee, or can i just pay them out of pocket? Is there an issue with insurance if i opt to pay them out of pocket?

3. Do I have to hire post-production people as independent contractors (for this example, assume there is only one), or can i pay them out of pocket as well? Is there any insurance liability if they are working on their own equipment on their own property?

I guess the crux of these questions is to what extent, in very small productions, one can just pay off the actors and help without bringing insurance, W2's, and 1040's into it.



I don't want to sound snarky, but do you have any assets? If you have none, then you might want to "go naked," and if you get sued you can declare bankruptcy and be done with it. But seriously, if you own anything and/or you want to be a responsible person, you should be insured!

You're paying people to work for you, so you should do the right thing. Production insurance is not expensive compared to what can happen and the liability exposure you could be in for.

I am not an insurance agent or expert, but I can give you my opinion:

1) If you rent a house, you are responsible for any damage. Yes, the owner probably has insurance, but you are the responsible party. If the owner makes a claim to his insurance company they may pay the owner but then they are going to sue you as the person responsible. Also, homeowners insurance can have deductables as high as 10% of the value house. That's a big number. You don't need to list everyone on the liability insurance. When you rent a house there is usually a clause in the rental contract that states that the house will be used a dwelling. If you have different intentions you should inform the owner.

2) I wouldn't suggest paying people "out of pocket." I would think you can use them as an independent contractor and give them a 1099, but you should check with someone that knows IRS regs on that. Stay out of a tax mess.

3) If they are an independent contractor, and your description seems accurate, they are responsible for their own insurance and taxes. Give 'em a 1099 if you're concerned about it and you should be off the hook. I would suggest you do a search for the current regs on the definition of an independent contractor-- it's pretty straightforward.

If you're working with a group of people on a rented property and poeple are getting paid, you really should cover your butt, and theirs, by buying a short term policy.

I have been very happy working with Katherine Wong at Heffernan Insurance, (213) 236-0511, https://www.buymyinsurancenow.com . They specialize in small productions and she should be able to answer all your questions accurately and in detail.

Good luck, it isn't really that hard to get all your ducks in a row and sleep well at night!

Bruce Taylor
www.indi35.com
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#3 James Steven Beverly

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Posted 28 February 2009 - 04:22 AM

http://www.filmempor.../insurance.html

http://www.frankelin...ertainment2.htm

http://www.productio...p;country_id=-1

http://www.eqgroup.c..._production.htm

http://www.firsttower.com/mpform.htm

http://www.kellyinsu...ment_insurance/
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#4 Landon D. Parks

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Posted 25 July 2009 - 07:59 PM

CSI Entertainment Insurance is one of the best I have received quotes from. Insurance premiums will vary based on your type of production, budget and what kind of insurance you need. Generally, Insurance can be as low as $1,200, but averages 4 - 6% of your budget.
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Wooden Camera

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Willys Widgets

The Slider

Glidecam

Tai Audio

Gamma Ray Digital Inc

rebotnix Technologies

Abel Cine

FJS International, LLC

Rig Wheels Passport

Ritter Battery

Metropolis Post

CineTape