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0207 9234655
0207 9237436
Charles Milnes
101 Northside Studios,
16-29 Andrews Road,
E8 4QF,

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Protecting your production
Successful digital production and movie-making is typically about imagination, talent and versatility as a producer or director. Success may also lie in attention to the kind of details that may be overlooked in the creative heat of the shoot.

Whether you are making a film or a documentary, producing content for the internet, recording a live event, promoting a music concert or commissioning a corporate video, there are a number of issues which might determine the financial success or failure of all your hard work.

Many of these are events over which you may have little or no control – they are largely unforeseeable or accidental. They can prove extremely expensive to put right:

  • video, negative, film and digital recordings – whatever your chosen media, the fruits of your movie-making represent the valuable final product. Whatever the media, however, it is vulnerable to loss, damage, accidental destruction and theft. Production insurance is designed to protect you against the loss, destruction or theft of your movie – on whatever medium it has been recorded.

  • some events beyond your control may also result in filming being disrupted, interrupted, postponed or even cancelled. Once again, the financial penalties – for extending the time you need to be on set or for failing to deliver to a deadline – may be severe. So that you may be able to meet such claims, the insurance typically arranged by filmmakers includes an important component described as Commercial producers and professional indemnity insurance. This element of cover may also provide financial protection against the risk of your production being sued for breach of copyright, slander, libel, or invasion of privacy

Safeguarding your film-making against other liabilities

Of course, it is not just the film itself that may need the protection of insurance. There are two further liabilities which may leave you exposed to claims potentially involving many thousands of pounds. Those liabilities are:

  • public liability – on the film set itself or through any other activity connected with the making of your film there is the risk of accidental damage to the property of, or personal injury to, members of the public, visitors to the set, cast and crew, or business associates. If it is deemed to have been the result of a breach of your duty of care towards such individuals you may be held liable for the payment of a considerable sum in damages – especially if any injury has been involved. Given the size of the claims that may be involved, public liability insurance typically starts at a level of £2 million, although £5 million is by no means uncommon;

  • employers’ liability – you are required by law to hold insurance indemnifying you from claims made by anyone you employed in the course of making your film. Whether they are paid employees or otherwise, you have a legal obligation to hold insurance that may meet claims for loss or damage to property, personal injury or sickness and illness contracted in the course of the employee’s work for you. Once again, the amount of such claims – especially those involving personal injury or lasting ill-health – may be considerable. For this reason, the level of cover is typically provided for claims of £10 million;

  • in addition to insurance against such liabilities, you may also want to make sure that you have adequate cover for all your filming equipment (cameras, lighting, sound recorders and other specialist devices), including that which you may need to hire. Depending on your chosen insurer cover for equipment you own may be distinguished between that that you use in your studio, office or home, and that which may be in use beyond the relative safety and security of those places.
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