Film Production Insurance: Covering Stunts and Special effects

Posted by David Hamilton on Jan 30, 2010 1:19:00 PM
The Film Production  insurance policy contains an exclusion under the Cast Insurance coverage for a person injured when taking part in a hazardous stunt or any special effect in the declared production, without the prior consent of the insurance company.

Although these types of activities are usually reserved for stunt performers, the producer and the director should be aware of this exclusion. If actors are involved in hazardous stunts or special effects, please advise your broker well in advance so that they can make the appropriate arrangements with the insurance company.

In order to properly evaluate the hazards involving stunts used in filming, please provide answers to the following:

1. Synopsis of scenes being filmed.

2. List stunts by tape, location and date.

3. Protective measures used to protect participants and public, equipment and property.

4. What is the experience of the Stunt Coordinator - please attach a resume.

5. How many people are involved in each stunt scene?

Additional information may be requested. The underwriters may cover the scene based on the strength of the information - the stunt coordinator resume is particularly important; otherwise, the underwriter may charge an additional premium, or apply a higher deductible or impose a sub-limit on the limit of coverage, or, they may use a combination of all three to address the risk.

If you are comfortable with a high deductible and sub limit you can often save the cost of an additional premium being charged.

Be sure to talk to your Entertainment  Insurance broker before you film any stunts or SPFX scenes that were not origionally in the script that your broker provided the insurance company.

Tags: d&o insurance, D&O liability, DICE Policy, Annual Film Insuruance, Documentary Insurance, Film Insurance, Documentary Films, Film Production Insurance, Production Insurance, Entertainment Insurance, Film insurance broker, DICE Insurance, DICE Insurance, Entertainment Insurance Broker, Hazardous stunts, Stunt Insurance, SPFX Insurance, Special Effects Insurance

Directors and Officers Insurance for Film Production Companies

Posted by David Hamilton on Jan 30, 2010 12:54:00 PM

Small to medium sized privately owned film production companies face several of the same management exposures as larger corporations - yet many don't purchase directors and officers liability insurance. A simpler approach could change all of that.

There are several hundreds of production companies in Canada and it is clear they are important to Canada's economy. What's less clear is why so few of them buy management protection in the form of directors and officers (D&O) or Employment Practices (EPL) liability insurance. Several studies show that the take-up rate of management liability protection amongst production companies has been slow.

While Canadian data is scarce, a recent survey by Chubb Insurance found that 37% of U.S. companies do not purchase any type of management liability or professional liability insurance. In a survey of private companies, the majority of survey participants (63%) did not buy directors and officers liability or employment practices liability insurance. Based on our experience, the same trends likely apply in Canada.

Smaller privately owned companies may think their exposure to management liability risks is low or negligible, but that is not necessarily the case. In fact, another study by Chubb Insurance Company of Canada showed that private firms both here and south of the border are facing similar rates of lawsuits against their directors and officers, legal action involving general management liability and lawsuits from their customers.

In a survey released in September 2008, Chubb discovered that private companies in Canada and the U.S. faced similar lawsuits from customers (16%), competitors (5%), Vendors (6%) and partners or shareholders (3%) in the last five years. The average cost of the affected Canadian companies was $338,699. One-third of Canadian companies and almost a quarter of U.S. firms experienced an employment-practices related incident in the last five years. Judgments, settlements, fines and legal fees for such incidents cost affected companies an average of $63,724.

Based on our experience, there are numerous factors as to why film production companies tend to decline management liability protection. Many of the privately held film production companies we talk to say the application process is too cumbersome and the information requirements too broad. The second is that film production companies tend to perceive the price as too high.

Film production companies also tend to have fewer internal control mechanisms, such as human resources or compliance officers and company protocols, than larger suppliers.

Moreover, private held companies are likely to face short-term cash flow issues, which is reflected in relatively higher bankruptcy rates for small businesses.

The bottom line is the film production companies can, and do, face a number of liability issues related to directors and officers and employment practices. Executive and non-executive business owners are increasingly being held accountable for their actions.

We know of several distinct examples of privately held companies facing litigation related to bankruptcy, misrepresentation, wrongful dismissal and dissolution of a partnership. In one case, a retail company over expanded during a time of economic difficulty. Its revenues shrank, but inventory and supplies continued to grow. The result was bankruptcy. The company faced statutory liabilities and the directors were left exposed to pay for amounts owing 9including unpaid wages). The settlement amount came to $765,000 (including $165,000 for defence costs).

In Ontario, Bill 198 has also made it easier for shareholders to sue companies along with their directors and officers. In the last 18 months, the number of lawsuits has increased significantly as a result of this legislation.

It's clear there is a potentially significant coverage gap for many privately held companies in Canada when it comes to management liability. The main purpose of any new D&O or EPL insurance solution should help to protect these organizations.

Tags: d&o insurance, d&o insurance, d & o insurance, d&o insurances, D&O liability, directors & officers insurance, directors & officers liablity, Film insurance broker, Film Production Companies

Multimedia Risk Insurance Explained

Posted by David Hamilton on Jan 25, 2010 3:47:00 PM

Otherwise known as Producers Errors and Omissions Insurance, Multimedia Risk Insurance covers legal liability and defense for the production company  against lawsuits alleging unauthorized use of titles, formats, ideas, characters, plots, plagiarism, unfair competition or privacy, breach of contract. It also protects against alleged libel, slander, defamation of character or invasion of privacy. This coverage will usually be required by a distributor prior to the release of any theatrical or television production.

If coverage is required for the title, you must obtain a ‘Title Report & Opinion' from a recognised Film Title Clearance Company offering this service and submit the report to underwriters for final approval.

Premium indications prior to actual quotes when coverage is offered can vary; However a straight forward documentary would cost $5,000 and $7,000 for a feature film.

Upon instructions from the Production Company, the broker will begin clearance procedures where the attorney for the underwriter will review and approve your lawyers clear the project - there is a fee for this service which is included in the final premium. If coverage is not bound, the fee is payable to the attorney for the underwriter and an invoice will be issued accordingly.

You should check your production/distribution/financing agreements regarding the start date for Errors & Omissions coverage. Some financiers require Errors & Omissions coverage to be in place for the first day of principle photography.

It can take up to ten (10) working days for a project to be cleared and coverage to be in place.


Go to our website for more information:

Tags: Producers Errors & Omissions Liability Insurance, Producers E&O Insurance, E&O insurance for Films, E&O Insurance, Digital E&O insurance, HD E&O, Errors and Omissions coverage for films, Multimendia Risk, Multimedia Risk Insurance, Producers Errors and Omissions Insurance

Festivals Insurance

Posted by David Hamilton on Jan 14, 2010 10:27:00 AM
Fairs and Festival insurance can protect you for one event or multiple events under an annual policy.

Under the single event policy, you are typically protected from lawsuits arising from different liabilities, including general liability, liquor liability, automobile liability and physical damage, as well as third party property damage. This policy can also cover the cost of replacing damaged or stolen equipment as well  sets, props and wardrobe. regardless if they are rented or owned.

This insurance can also protect you in case your event is cancelled.

Like the single event policy, the Annual Event Insurance can protect you from lawsuits arising from different liabilities , including general liability, liquor liability, automobile liability and physical damage, as well as third party property damage. It also covers the cost of replacing damaged or stolen equipment, sets, props and wardrobe are also covered, regardless if rented or owned.

To obtain a quote, a completed application will need to be submitted so that your broker can negotiate with the insurance company. It is suggested that you use an experiance entertainment insurance broker that has experiance with festivals.

Tags: Entertainment Insurance Broker, Fairs and Festivals, Fairs and Festivals insurance, Annual Film Insurance

Film Production Insurance: Why it is Needed.

Posted by David Hamilton on Jan 11, 2010 9:28:00 AM

Production insurance is vital to financing your project. Why is insurance needed for your production? Three basic reasons are:  Legal, Contractual and property protection.

As for legal reasons, nearly every  location and financier requires that a production company/filmmaker carry some form of insurance. A good example of this is the need for general liability insurance to cover property damage and and bodily injury to third parties. A building owner will want to be protected for any damage caused to the location. The buildiong owner would also want to be protected from any lawsuits brought forth from a passerby that tripped on electrical cables or from injuries sustained by gear that falls off a roof.

The contractual reason is simple. If you are under contract with a broadcaster or distributor , most likely the contract will require you to have insurance coverage before you can access your payment drawdowns.A

The property protection covers you against damage and loss to assets like production equipment that you are contractually responsible for as set out in your rental agreement with the rental company. 

The type of policy you need depends on the type of project you plan to make. If you are making a short music video, the type of policy you want will differ from a filmmaker who aims to make a feature film. There are basically three types: short-term, annual DICE Insurance and annual. Short-term policies are used for single production, such as a commercial. A DICE Insurance Policy is used for several projects during a year period. DICE stands for Documentaries, Industrial Films, Commercials and Educational Films.

 Try to give your broker three to five days to arrange the coverage for you: this will ensure your broker has enough time to obtain the best price and coverage available in the marketplace.

The three policies you need to consider for any film production are:

General Liability Insurance

 It covers against damage to the filming location/space, and injury or harm to those present that are not working on the film.

Equipment Insurance

Equipment insurance covers any and all film equipment used in your filmmaking process and production. This policy will cover loss, damage, theft, etc. to your rented or owned equipment. .

Errors and Omissions Insurance

This type of insurance protects against lawsuits alleging unauthorized usage of titles, copyrighted materials, ideas, formats, characters, plots, plagiarism, unfair competition, defamation and invasion of privacy. E&O insurance requires the counsel of an entertainment lawyer who will review your script, clearances and releases.


Tags: Annual Film Insuruance, Commercial Production Insurance, Documentary Insurance, Film Insurance, Film Production Equipment, Film Production Insurance, Producers Errors & Omissions Liability Insurance, E&O insurance for Films, Errors and Omissions coverage for films, Film insurance broker, DICE Insurance, DICE Insurance, Industrial Films, Commercials, Educational Films

Film Insurance Broker: Choose the Right One

Posted by David Hamilton on Jan 11, 2010 9:25:00 AM

To make sure you engage the most qualified Film Insurance Broker for your production, consider the following questions:

How familiar is the Broker with the film industry and the unique terminology of film production? Do the know what a DICE policy is? Do they have experiance with documentary insurance? Do they understand Producers Errors and Ommissions insurance?

 In the event of a claim, will they be able to understand the circumstances of a loss and communicate the details to the insurance company to obtain the most favourable and efficient claim settlement for your film production?

Can your broker ensure that your production insurance risks are identified?

Does your broker have experience insuring films or TV series? If so, how much? Do they deal with producers on a daily basis?

Does the Broker have a large enough premium volume with entertainment insurance underwriters to ensure you are offered the best premium?

Tags: Documentary Insurance, Film Insurance, Film Production Insurance, Producers Errors & Omissions Liability Insurance, E&O insurance for Films, Errors and Omissions coverage for films, Film insurance broker


Posted by David Hamilton on Jan 6, 2010 10:29:00 AM

What we Need to Quote for Feature Productions, TV Series, Specials, Movies-of-the-week:

 1. Name of the production company.

2. Address

3. Phone and E-Mail

4. Name of the Director, Producer, Line Producer

5. Synopsis and script

6. Name of the top two financiers

7. Dates of Principle Photography

8. Copy of full budget

9. Location of filming

10. Information on any Stunts or Hazardous Activities.Underwriter will require resume of each Stunt Coordinator / Pyrotechnician / Wrangler.

11. Are you shooting Film or Tape / Digital Video? • If film, what lab are you using? – give lab name and address • Film size, i.e. 16mm, 35mm, etc. • What type of cameras will you be using? • How are you getting the negative to the lab?

12. Provide the name and address of the Bond Company.

13. Cast Coverage – are nay members of the Cast considered an Essential Element?

14. Name of Distributor or Broadcaster.

Call with any questions.

Thank you.

Tags: Documentary Insurance, Film Insurance, Film Production Insurance, E&O insurance for Films, Errors and Omissions coverage for films, Film insurance broker

New Entertainment Insurance Broker in Canada

Posted by David Hamilton on Jan 5, 2010 6:21:00 PM

We are pleased to announce that  Focus Entertainment Insurance Brokers Inc. will merge with the Entertainment Division of Jones Brown Inc. to form Front Row Insurance Brokers Inc.  Front Row is an independent insurance brokerage focusing on the needs of the entertainment industry. Our contact information is as follows:


Vancouver Office                                                          Toronto Office


604 - 1200 Burrard Street                                              480 University Avenue, Ste. 1100

Vancouver, BC V6Z 2C7                                                Toronto, Ontario  M5G 1V2

Tel: 604-684-3456                                                          Tel: 416-408-1920

Fax: 604-684-3437                                                         Fax: 416-408-4517


Montreal Office


331 boulevard Saint-Luc

Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec J2W 2A3

Tel: 450-359-6620

Fax: 450-359-8132


The merger will make Front Row one of the largest entertainment Insurance brokers in Canada, and will provide us with additional leverage when negotiating premiums, coverages and claims settlements for our clients.  The combined companies, which insured over one billion dollars in production budgets over the last 12 months, give us unmatched entertainment insurance brokering experience and negotiating strength in Canada.

Front Row arranges: feature film insurance, TV Series Insurance, Documentary insurance, film equipment insurance, webisode insurance, E&O insurance for films New Media Insurance, Fairs and Festivals Insurance, Art Gallery Insurance, musical instrument insurance, music insurance, and more entertainment related insurances.

Front Row employs 20 insurance professionals across our three offices, and is licensed in all ten Canadian provinces.

Should you have any questions please don't hesitate to contact one of our offices.

Tags: Annual Film Insuruance, Commercial Production Insurance, Documentary Insurance, Film Insurance, Special Event Insurance, Fairs and Festivals insurance, event cancellation insurance, Film Production Equipment, Film Production Insurance, Producers Errors & Omissions Liability Insurance, Producers E&O Insurance, E&O insurance for Films, E&O Insurance, HD E&O, Errors and Omissions coverage for films, Film insurance broker, musical instrument insurance, music insurance

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