Entertainment insurance protects producers, crew, equipment, and filming locations. Multiple insurance policies cover potential losses including general liability, production, and media liability insurance. A small production company could obtain general liability coverage and film production insurance for under $1,000 annually. The purchase of a Business Owner’s Policy, which bundles coverage, could provide savings.
The Hartford is one insurer that offers Business Owner’s Policies that are structured to meet the specific needs to various industries including music, film, and entertainment production. Business owners in this industry can use The Hartford to get the right amount of coverage for the right price. Visit The Hartford today to get a quote in minutes.
Top Media, Film and Entertainment Production Insurance Providers
|The Hartford||Work with an industry leading insurance company to get a customized policy in minutes|
|Insurance321||Agents shop and compare your coverage needs to find you the best policy for the best price.|
|InsuredProduction||Small productions over a short time period|
|FrontRow Insurance||Annual package policies providing broad coverage for documentary producers|
|Next Insurance||Bundle your Business Owners Policy (BOP) and save with Next Insurance.|
The Hartford is an industry leading small business insurance company. Their team of agents work to meet your exact coverage needs by offering customized policies specific to each individual business. The Hartford provides industry leading customer service by offering ongoing support once your policy is purchased. Get a free, no obligation quote in minutes.
When you’re unsure of which insurance provider to use, reach out to the agents at Insurance321. Their team of experts shop for your exact coverage needs to find you the best policy at the best price. With Insurance321, companies are able to compete for your business. Get multiple quotes in as little as four minutes.
If you’re doing a short project over a limited time, InsuredProduction is the right choice because coverage is specifically focused on small, fast film shoots. Ideal for filming corporate videos, music, TV pilots, training films, and PSAs, InsuredProduction covers productions with a maximum filming duration of 60 days and a budget up to $1 million.
FrontRow specializes in annual production insurance for documentary producers. If you’ll be filming multiple productions over a year or your project spans many months, an annual policy purchased from FrontRow Insurance ensures you’re covered for the duration. Options for coverage are also broad, and policies may protect, props, wardrobe, rented equipment, general liability, auto accidents, and more.
Next Insurance is another insurance company that you may want to consider if you’re looking for entertainment insurance. Using Next Insurance, you can get a Business Owner’s Policy that bundles coverage and is specifically designed to meet the needs of companies in the entertainment industry. Visit Next Insurance today to get a quote in just a few minutes.
What Entertainment Insurance Is
Content producers must secure protection from losses but can’t just buy one insurance policy. You’ll need a general liability policy in case of claims against you or property damage coverage for equipment, and you’ll need media liability insurance in case of defamation or copyright claims. Additional coverage specific to production type, including video and film production insurance, may also be needed.
If you’re producing music or film, an injured crew member could sue after getting hurt on set or you could be sued for copyright violations for using someone else’s song. If you’re sued, you’d need coverage for defense costs and resulting damages. Or, if expensive production equipment is stolen, insurance will replace it. When you have the right coverage, you’re prepared for these and other losses.
What Entertainment Insurance Covers
Producers should obtain different types of coverage, including a business owner’s policy, media liability insurance, film and video production insurance, production completion bonds, and workers’ compensation. Together, these policies will protect against liability if you’re sued, problems with production, and injuries to staff.
Business Owner’s Policy
This policy bundles commercial general liability coverage and property damage coverage so you’re protected if you’re sued or if property is damaged. Bundled coverage under a BOP, instead of buying separate policies, is cheaper and more convenient.
Media Liability Insurance
This is a type of specialized errors and omissions coverage that protects you if you’re sued based on work produced. Insurance covers claim costs associated with a lawsuit for defamation, copyright violations, plagiarism, invasion of privacy, and related offenses.
Video and Film Production Insurance
Filming for a video or multimedia production can be very expensive, and many things can go wrong during the process, from problems with props or equipment to damage to the film after the shoot is done. Video and film production insurance bundles coverage for potential losses incurred when filming so you can recover lost funds when problems arise.
Typical film insurance policies cover:
- The costs of re-shooting due to loss or damage
- Multiple cameras
- Liability on multiple locations
- Film stock
Policies are either sold as a DICE policy for video production companies or as a short-term producer’s policy for feature films and short-duration productions. DICE stands for documentary, industrials, commercial, and educational because people shooting these types of videos often engage in projects throughout the year and require continuous coverage.
Production Completion Bonds
Production completion bonds may be required to secure financing for independently-funded projects. Completion bonds guarantee a finished project, on time and on budget. If a bond guarantees a motion picture that ends up over budget, the guarantor—the insurer that issues the bond—will pay the excess amount. If the film isn’t delivered, the guarantor will repay money invested by financiers.
Workers’ Compensation Insurance
Workers’ compensation provides protection in case any worker is hurt while doing production work. Most film, video, and production companies have many employees on set, sometimes engaged in dangerous physical tasks. Workers’ compensation covers medical costs, loss of wages, and disability benefits in the event any employee is injured on the job.
What Entertainment Insurance Doesn’t Cover
Many standard policies do not provide coverage for high-risk activities unless you purchase supplemental add-ons. These add-ons can be purchased from the insurer providing your primary policy, but you’ll need to pay additional premiums in order to get the extra coverage.
For example, you may need specialty add-ons if your production involves:
- Aircraft insurance
- Filming underwater
- Using drones during filming
- Working with animals
- Filming on or under water
Policies also will not provide coverage for criminal acts committed by the insured, such as intentionally violating state or federal law on the use of explosive devices. When employees violate the law and cause damage, liability policies may provide coverage; however, if you’re concerned about certain employee misconduct such as theft of your filmed footage, you may need to purchase a commercial crime policy for added protection.
Entertainment Insurance Costs
Because you cannot just buy one type of entertainment insurance policy, you will incur costs for several different kinds of insurance. For example, while video production insurance may cost as much as 2.5 percent of your total budget for a film being produced, a basic Business Owner’s Policy would have a cost between $500 and $3,500 for $2 million in coverage and media liability insurance would run $1,500 to $2,500 for $3 million in coverage.
|Business Owner’s Policy|
|Media Liability Insurance|
|Video Production Insurance|
|Production Completion Bonds|
|Workers’ Compensation Insurance|
Factors affecting costs include:
- Project costs: A more expensive project means more potential for something to go wrong with filming or if you fail to deliver on time. Insurers charge more for the added risks on expensive film and media projects.
- Past claim history: If you have a long history with no claims, insurers view you as low risk. However, if you have made claims in the past, it raises red flags for insurers that you may be prone to problems and you’ll be charged higher premiums as a result.
- Experience in the industry: Insurers value experience gained over time. The longer you’ve been working in your field, the better you’re likely to be at your work and the less chance of problems arising. As a result, costs of insurance go down if you can demonstrate you’re an expert in your industry with ample real-world experience.
- Number of employees: The more workers you have, the greater the risk of injury and the more likely it is an employee will cause something to go wrong during production. Workers’ compensation and other policies, including your Business Owner’s Policy, may be more costly if you have many staff members.
- Equipment and materials: The value of equipment, props, sets, and related materials will all impact the cost of entertainment insurance policy
Tips on Getting/Applying for Production Insurance
If you’re a music, film, or entertainment professional, figuring out how to get the right coverage can be hard. These tips can help you to find the right comprehensive policies to meet your needs.
Obtain coverage before getting started
Getting insurance at the right time isn’t just about protection from loss—you may be required to have coverage in order to get your project off the ground.
“You’ll be required to obtain at least a General Liability policy anytime you’re required to obtain a permit for filming or when leasing a location for the purposes of filming,” advised Kevin Topper, niche president at ProSight Specialty Insurance.
It can take time to get the right coverage and obtain certificates of insurance so you can provide proof of your policies, so begin shopping for insurance early.
Find out about policy exclusions
The terms of your insurance coverage can vary from one policy and provider to the next, so make sure you understand exactly what is covered—and what exclusions each policy may have.
“It’s important to disclose any stunts, pyrotechnics or hazardous filming activities to make sure there are no exclusions applicable to these exposures,” advised Topper.
If you’ll be engaging in higher-risk activities during the production process, most insurers allow you to obtain add-on coverage for these hazards.
Work with a broker specialist
Topper recommended getting expert help in finding the insurance coverage you need. “Production companies should seek out a broker who specialize in entertainment and media to insure their projects appropriately,” Topper said.
When shopping for coverage, Topper indicated that you can expect to be asked about production experience, expected types of production you’ll be doing while covered by the policy, production location, and hazardous activities. A broker can help you to find a policy tailor-made to meet your needs and priced appropriately given your level of risk.
Additional Production Insurance Types
In addition to a business owner’s policy, media liability coverage, film production insurance, production completion bonds, and workers’ compensation coverage, there may also be other policies you need to protect against losses. Music, film, and entertainment producers may wish to consider auto insurance, equipment coverage, and cast coverage.
You may require coverage for both owned automobiles and non-owned or hired autos. Comprehensive coverage can protect you against liability in an accident involving an automobile as well as provide compensation for damage to owned or rented vehicles, including film trucks, dressing room trailers, and grip trucks.
If you have expensive specialized equipment such as very costly cameras or sound equipment, a standard property damage policy may not provide sufficient coverage. You may need additional miscellaneous equipment coverage. This type of coverage can also protect you in case you damage rented equipment and owe money for the equipment and loss of use.
Cast coverage reimbursement provides coverage for costs associated with completing a project when a performer or director becomes sick or passes away. If your star suffers a serious illness and cannot finish the film, you may have to replace the actor or actress and re-shoot any scenes you’ve already completed. Insurance can cover the expense.
Entertainment Insurance Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
If you have questions about buying production insurance, the Fit Small Business forum is a great place to get your queries answered. You can also check out the answers to some frequently asked questions below to learn more.
What’s the difference between short-term production insurance and annual insurance?
Short-term production insurance policies provide coverage only for a particular project. A policy would cover projects of very short duration, including simple films that take a day to produce. Annual policies provide coverage for all projects completed throughout a year. Price differences between short-term policies and annual policies may be small, so get quotes for both.
How do you determine coverage areas for film production insurance or video insurance?
Coverage areas are locales where your policy is in effect, and provide domestic (one or more states) or international coverage. The more coverage areas, the more costly the policy. For short-term policies, coverage is only the location where you’ll be filming. For annual policies, you’ll need coverage for any areas you’ll be shooting throughout the year.
When do you pay premiums for production insurance?
For most production insurance policies, premiums are typically due at the start of the project, when coverage is obtained. However, if you purchase an annual policy, it’s possible to pay in monthly installments after making an initial down payment typically equal to around 25 percent of the annual premium cost.
If you are producing video, film, or music, you need entertainment insurance as well as a business owner’s policy. Shop for music insurance or film production insurance before beginning production to ensure you can secure financing and avoid losses in case something goes wrong. Bundled coverage can be the best approach to save money on entertainment insurance while ensuring you’re fully protected.
The Hartford is a very well-established company that offers insurance for companies in the media and entertainment industries. If you’re engaged in entertainment production, you can use The Hartford to get coverage that meets your specific needs. Visit The Hartford today to get a quote and make sure you have the coverage you need.