Film Production Insurance

Film and Video Production insurance

CPR Insurance Services are able to obtain insurance for anyone in Film or television production.

This type of insurance is rated on the proposed Film’s budget. The rate then depends on the type of production and the potential risks associated with it.

Here is a list of some of the information we may require in order to obtain a quotation:

  • Type of Production
  • Budget a full budget or top sheet may be required.
  • Storyline a synopsis or script will be needed.
  • Locations
  • Shoot Schedule
  • Contracts
  • Shooting Format
  • Facilities Companies
  • Financing source
  • Names of heads of Departments
  • Key Cast and crew
  • Risk Assessments

The cover under each section is depends on the potential exposure as does the excess which is an amount of money the production has to pay in the event of a claim before the Insurance claim.

The following provides details of the basic covers available in a standard Production Insurance package. These do vary between different insurer’s own policy packages. Each section is subject to the full terms and conditions which can be found in the full policy wording.


Cast Insurance

This class of cover is also known as Film Producers’ Indemnity Insurance, provides for the increased costs incurred due to the death, injury or illness of named persons. Determining who should be nominated for cover can be difficult. As a basic guide, the production company should only insure those personnel who are integral to the completion/continuation of the production.

In most cases the Director is the most important and is usually always insured under this policy  along with the main performers/actors. Depending on the type of productions, other key personnel can be a Narrator, Director of Photography, Producer and Animators. If the film is being made overseas then other key members of the crew would be insured on the basis that they would not be easily replaced. Insurance is normally taken out for Pre-Production and the Shoot but can also be taken out for the Post-Production period.

The Director is often insured for the longest period being from the first day of pre-production and  cover is usually maintained to the end of post-production because of their continuing involvement in the film. Performers may be involved in post-production for voiceovers and pickup shots. Insurers quite often require a medical examination to be completed before providing cover.

Having this cover in place for the additional expenses incurred due to and directly from the death or bodily injury occurring, or illness first becoming apparent, of the

named person during the period from the commencement of their contract with the Production Company to at least the end of principal photography is considered vital and usually a mandatory requirement of those providing finance to a production.


Negative/Videotape/Faulty Stock Camera and Processing Insurance

Cover is provided to indemnify the production for the increased costs incurred due to loss of, or damage to the negative, and includes the risks of faulty stock, camera and processing. These are the additional costs which result solely and directly from physical loss or physical damage to negative or videotape occurring during the period of insurance and before a protection print or duplicate tape has been completed and removed from the premises where the negative or videotape is normally located.

Coverage will normally commence about a week before the shoot and will cease at the end of post-production. It is important that Insurers are advised what systems and formats will be utilised on the production in order that the most adequate cover is provided for particularly with ever changing technology.

Multi Risks

This particular cover is usually split into three sections:

  •  props, sets and wardrobe,
  • production office contents,
  • technical equipment (cameras, lighting and electrical)

Make sure that the sum insured on each of these sections represents the full value. For production specific insurance it must be put in place before the commencement of the shoot. Also it must be determined whether items owned by specific crew members are covered by the production or by the owner who is hiring them to the company. If the crew member is providing insurance cover then the applicable contract should reflect same. Annual insurance can be arranged for all owners and  or hirers of equipment no matter the value of the equipment to be insured. The policy should be extremely flexible and cover may be arranged on a world wide basis.

  • Props, Sets and Wardrobe

Covers physical loss or physical damage to scenery, costumes and theatrical property occurring during the period of insurance whether is either owned or in the Production Company’s care, custody or control and are being used for the insured production.

  • Production Office Contents

Covers physical loss or physical damage occurring during the period of insurance to the contents while within a production office, including whether on location or in transit to or from a location.

  •  Technical Equipment

Covers physical loss or physical damage to technical equipment occurring during the period of insurance which is either owned or in the Production Company’s care, custody or control and is being used for the insured production. Technical equipment includes, but is not limited to, cameras, camera equipment, sound and lighting equipment, portable electrical equipment, mechanical effects equipment and grip equipment.

Extra Expense

This section provides cover to the production company for the increased costs incurred by loss of or damage to props, sets and / or facilities.  This is cover for the additional costs which result solely and directly from physical loss or physical damage occurring during the period of insurance to the property or facilities used by you for the insured production.

Whilst it may be difficult selecting the sum insured for this cover it should reflect  the maximum exposure that the production company believes could be incurred. The basic area to consider under this cover is that it is not necessarily covering  only those items which are insured under the Multi-Risks cover such as props, sets and wardrobe. If the production is being shot in a studio then the studio is considered to be a facility. If the studio were to be destroyed by fire then the production company would obviously incur increased costs in moving to another studio or location. Cover should be extended to include mechanical / electrical breakdown. Cover may be taken either for an individual production or on an annual basis if required



Covers physical loss or physical damage occurring during the period of insurance to money designated for use on the insured production whether used as “petty cash” or “production floats”.


Public Liability

This cover indemnifies the Production Company up to the amount insured against any claim for damages for which it may become legally liable to pay for accidents occurring during the period of insurance which cause bodily injury or disease or loss of or damage to property in connection with the insured production.

The cover includes defence costs.

The policy covers the production company for claims made against it by third  parties for acts of negligence resulting in property damage or injury or death to persons, other than employees of the production company. The cover extends to include loss of use. This, of course, could result in large additional costs being incurred. Cover can be obtained for limits between $5,000,000 and $20,000,000 although most councils and Government authorities are requesting $20,000,000. On occasions limits in excess of $20,000,000 may be demanded.

Cover may be effected for individual productions or on an annual basis if required.


Employers Liability

If required due to the location situation, this is cover that indemnifies the Production Company up to the limit insured against any claim for damages which the Production Company may become legally liable to pay for accidents occurring during the period of insurance which cause bodily injury or disease to any person employed by it in connection with the insured production and arising out of their employment on the insured production. The cover will also include defence costs.


Professional Indemnity (Errors and Omissions)

Also known as Motion Picture Producers’ Liability, this is a “claims made” cover providing indemnity for legal action taken against the producer and the production company for actions of defamation, plagiarism, breach of copyright, invasion of privacy, infringement or interference with privacy or publicity rights or theft of intellectual rights. The cover includes defence costs within the indemnity limit and is usually worldwide. The policy will state a limit on any one claim as well as in the aggregate of all claims.

 This cover is often taken out separately often after the production has finished though this is not normally recommended due to confidential information being released leading to earlier than expected claim issues.

Initially a cover for at least three years is normally taken. Minimum coverage is $1,000,000 AUD on any one claim / $3,000,000 AUD in the aggregate. Many production companies take cover for at least $2,000,000 AUD on any one claim / $6,000,000 AUD in aggregate.

A fully completed Proposal Form and accepted by Insurers is required prior to the inception of any cover. This would include the Insured’s solicitor to review and approve the relevant clearance procedures. The title clearance should be obtained as soon as possible to ascertain that the title is available – it may be too late when the Production has been completed.


Other Policies that should also be included in a Film Production Insurance Programme.

  •  Contingent Personal Accident

Provides cover up to the limit insured where the insured person suffers bodily injury while actually working on the insured production which results in the insured person's accidental death or permanent incapacity.

  •  Travel Cover

Provides travel cover up to the limits arranged for each named person on each trip. The cover starts at the time the named person leaves their departure point and ends at the time the named person arrives back or at the time the named person’s employment on the insured production ends, whichever is the earlier. 

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