DID YOU KNOW? The most common delay to security deposit returns are outstanding financial assurances issues.

Security Deposits and Financial Assurances

The security deposit process and the financial assurances process are closely related.

Unresolved financial assurances issues can delay return of your deposit -- so, taking care of required financial assurances as soon as possible can help protect you against delay.

Purpose of SAG-AFTRA Security Deposits

Security deposits protect SAG-AFTRA members with respect to signatory producer obligations related to production. Security deposits must be posted before the start of principal photography.

The SAG-AFTRA security deposit is held according to the terms of the Security Deposit Letter that signatory producers sign. The letter states, among other things, that the deposit is “security” for the payment of all performers and background actors under the SAG-AFTRA jurisdiction, including delivery of financial assurances to the union.

Security Deposit Calculation

Security deposits are calculated based on a range of 40%-100% of all of the performer salaries (including pension & health contributions).

Use of SAG-AFTRA Security Deposit Funds

  1. Payment of Production Claims
    The Security Deposit Letter authorizes the union to deduct funds from the security deposit to pay outstanding contributions and to settle outstanding claims.
  2. Filing Fees
    The Security Deposit Letter authorizes the union to deduct costs for filing documents related to the security interest in public offices, such as the United States Copyright Office and the appropriate Secretaries of State. This amount changes based on the cost of filing. The deduction only affects pictures in which the union takes a secured interest.

Security Deposit Return

The security deposit is returned after the signatory production company delivers or has shown the following:

  • That all initial compensation has been correctly paid to all performers and background actors engaged on the picture;
  • That all claims on the picture have been resolved, including any liquidated damages claims;
  • That all pension and health contributions have been correctly paid to the appropriate pension and health plans;
  • That all production documents have been submitted, including the Final Cast List, the Casting Data Report, performer contracts, Exhibit G’s, and in some cases, the final cost report; and
  • That all requested financial assurances have been delivered to SAG-AFTRA.

Facilitating the Security Deposit Return Process

  • Prepare for the financial assurances process before you begin the signatory process using the Financial Assurances Checklist and other tools available at SAGAFTRA.org/fa.
  • Resolve all financial assurances issues before principal photography begins.
  • If for some reason SAG-AFTRA allows principal photography to begin before financial assurances issues are resolved, resolve them as soon as possible.
  • Your assigned Contracts business representative will provide a list of items that remain outstanding when the picture is cleared to start principal photography. Please follow up with your Contracts business representative at the end of principal photography to make sure you have provided everything.

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Security Deposits

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