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one day production insurance coverage

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Russell Robertsonone day production insurance coverage
by on Jun 3, 2011 at 6:04:29 pm

Apologies in advance for cross posting this question.

I submitted a proposal to supply video production services for a 1 day shoot. To get an idea of scope, it’s a 4 cameras, jib, typical audio etc. It’s a pilot of cooking show, for either web and/or cable broadcast.
Within my proposal I insist that the producer assume complete liability for any accidents or other issues during the shoot. The producer came back and said he did not have insurance, but would acquire it – did I have any idea where he could get this – I’m not sure – a simple Google search doesn’t really show up anything definitive.

Can anyone recommend a firm that can handle one day production insurance coverage? Anything else I should be aware of in this regard?

Many thanks in advance!


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Walter SoykaRe: one day production insurance coverage
by on Jun 3, 2011 at 8:20:42 pm

Regardless of what insurance your producer may or may not get, I think you should absolutely have your own liability policy. Liability insurance is generally pretty cheap, and I don't know if you'll be able to find a single-day policy.

Walter Soyka
Principal & Designer at Keen Live
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
RenderBreak Blog - What I'm thinking when my workstation's thinking
Creative Cow Forum Host: Live & Stage Events

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Todd TerryRe: one day production insurance coverage
by on Jun 3, 2011 at 8:35:00 pm

Our liability insurance is through and written into our regular company polices (fire, theft, equipment, vehicles, etc.) from Nationwide... but like Walter I'm not sure of any sources that will underwrite a one-day policy.

It's the coverage of all our stuff that makes our insurance expensive... but purely the liability portion of it is dirt cheap in comparison. I don't know the exact amount (I'm not the bean counter here), but it's a small percentage of the total insurance bill for our liability coverage (which is, if I remember correctly, $2 million).

He's also correct that, even if a producer is covering the gig, you need your own insurance policy as well. That is, unless this is an absolutely-one-time-and-one-time-only job and you've never done any production work before and after this one wraps you'll never do any again.

It's just one of those things you gotta have.


Todd Terry
Creative Director
Fantastic Plastic Entertainment, Inc.

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Mark SuszkoRe: one day production insurance coverage
by on Jun 3, 2011 at 8:37:54 pm

It's one of the things you can bet the lowball Craiglsist guys do NOT have... and 999 times out of a thousand, it doesn't matter....


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Richard HerdRe: one day production insurance coverage
by on Jun 3, 2011 at 10:34:01 pm

You should check your state's Film office for Short Term Production Insurance agents.

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Patrick OrtmanRe: one day production insurance coverage
by on Jun 5, 2011 at 6:41:13 pm

Good point, Mark. It's stuff like this that separates one's business from that of "a dude with camera". You know, for those potential clients who can't see quality, at least :-)

PatrickOrtman, Inc.
Los Angeles Digital Agency and Video Production Company

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Jonathan ZieglerRe: one day production insurance coverage
by on Jun 4, 2011 at 5:37:51 pm

We've used this guy: Taylor Davidson (The Ruboyianes Company, PLL - 520-577-1040-work, 520-906-2872-cell). He's based here in Arizona, but he handles insurance for most of the country. We used him for production insurance for a feature we shot last summer. Tell him what you need and, at the worst, he can tell you who you should talk to if he can't do it. Mind you, this is no plug, but a person I've used in the past.

Jonathan Ziegler

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Jonathan ZieglerRe: one day production insurance coverage
by on Jun 4, 2011 at 5:51:32 pm

Forgot to mention: a good insurance person will make specific recommendations on what you should be using for coverage - think of them as a part of your team. As such, a good insurance person will only quote you on what you will actually need on a production, but will make suggestions to round out the policy and fill in coverage gaps.

For example, it sounds like you will need an equipment rider (if equipment isn't covered in the main policy) and enhanced liability against injury (depends on policy coverage limits). Those can cost more, but for 1 day, it shouldn't be too bad. We spent $2200 for a 37 day shoot (about $60 for each shooting day), but with only 1 day, your per day cost will be much higher since the policy isn't spread out over several days. Get the quote and let the client know this is what it will cost and pass the expense on to them. After a while, you'll start quoting gigs with insurance included. ;)

Jonathan Ziegler

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