MPTF IS HERE TO PROVIDE ASSISTANCE TO
THE BROADER ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRY
DURING THIS DIFFICULT TIME

We provide temporary financial assistance for needs created or complicated by the COVID-19 pandemic. We can help with issues including health insurance, mental health assistance, rent, food, and other essentials. Please know that our eligibility requirements have been broadened so that we may be of assistance to the most people possible. We are here for you.

 

“We see a need and we fill it.” MPTF president and CEO Bob Beitcher said in a message to the industry. “The same is true today. MPTF remains fully committed to its mission of helping our entertainment community in their time of need. The need we see today is supporting those members of our industry workforce who are undergoing hardship due to COVID-19 related issues.”

 

If you are a member of the entertainment industry in search of assistance, please call our intake line at 323-634-3888 so that we can understand your situation and determine how we can help. 

See these frequently asked questions

Q: What is the MPTF COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund?

A: On March 24, 2020, MPTF President and CEO Bob Beitcher announced that MPTF had created an emergency relief fund to help those workers in the entertainment industry who are suffering COVID-19 related hardships.

Q: How do you qualify for financial assistance from the MPTF Emergency Relief Fund?

A: The MPTF fund is directed toward working industry members with the greatest need. In terms of work eligibility, MPTF is looking to support industry members who meet minimum earnings or hours thresholds over 3 of the past 6 years This will either need to be confirmed by a lifetime earnings report from a union pension database or by applicants providing W2’s/1099’s or other supporting documentation. To demonstrate their need for financial assistance, members will need to document that they have less than $10,000 in liquid assets at the time of applying for assistance. A social worker will assist this process, working alongside industry members in a team approach.

Q: Who makes the eligibility determination?

A: MPTF social workers will process the application and complete the eligibility determination. MPTF has been providing financial assistance to members of the industry in need for almost 100 years and has an experienced team to support this effort.

Q: Can you describe the application process?

A: The process begins with a call to the MPTF hotline (323) 634-3888. Industry members will speak to an MPTF social worker who will assess their eligibility and specific circumstances/needs. Members will be asked to provide the information described above. If they are a member of one of our industry’s unions, this information may be more readily available. Next, the assigned social worker will walk the member through the process of applying for financial assistance, which includes the completion of a financial assistance application and providing the following information: current bank statements showing the most recent 30 day transaction history and account balances, most recent pay stub/unemployment stub and the bill(s) the member is requesting assistance with. If approved, financial assistance is provided towards basic living expenses. The financial assistance will not go to the industry member directly but rather to specific vendors (for rent, mortgage, utilities, auto, student loan) Members will be notified by their assigned social worker of the determination.

Q: How long will it take from the time I apply and provide all the documentation to the time I am confirmed as eligible and get assistance.

A: This depends on the volume of calls MPTF is experiencing. Current turnaround time is approximately 3 to 5 business days.

Q: What amount of financial assistance might I receive?

A: The MPTF COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund grants are roughly $1,000. As mentioned above, these grants do not go directly to industry members but rather to those designated vendors (banks for mortgages or car payments or student loans, utility company, landlord, healthcare providers or insurers) provided to MPTF.

Q: If I am collecting unemployment or receiving any other kind of federal or state relief under recently passed legislation, am I still eligible for this financial assistance from my union?

A: Yes. The MPTF fund will supplement any other form of federal or state relief members of the industry workforce are receiving as a result of the loss of work from the COVID-19 virus.

Q: If my household has more than one working industry member, will we be treated differently? Will we both be eligible for a financial grant or will we be treated as a single household?

A: Dual member households where each member is eligible can receive up to $2,000. For those two-member households, bank statements demonstrating liquid assets of less than $20,000 will be required.

Q: I have seen announcements recently of additional emergency relief funding from the IATSE and Netflix. Can I apply to those sources as well?

A: We are working collaboratively with the IATSE and Netflix to ensure that the greatest number of eligible industry members have the opportunity for a single grant of financial assistance.

Q: Do I need to be a member of a union to qualify for a grant from the MPTF COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund?

A: No. We expect that most applicants will be union members, but the MPTF fund is intended for all members of the industry workforce who have lost work as a result of the COVID-19 virus and meet the other eligibility requirements.

Q: Will actors and writers qualify for the MPTF COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund?

A: MPTF encourages members of those guilds to apply for financial support from the MPTF COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund. In some cases, after intake we may refer the case over to the SAG-AFTRA Foundation and the WGA Foundation, both of whom have established their own emergency relief funds.

Q: Who is funding the MPTF COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund?

A: MPTF has been fortunate enough to receive donations from many industry members to build this fund, and continues to see significant donations on a daily basis. Beyond this, MPTF will access its financial reserves if the need is there.

Q: Is there a fee for any of this?

A: MPTF does not charge any kind of fee to applicants. Our mission has always been centered on taking care of our own and we want 100% of the dollars donated for the purpose of providing a safety net to industry members during this crisis to achieve that end.

Q: Will any of the information I provide in my application be shared with others?

A: No. All of our social work activity, like the management of this fund, is done on a highly confidential basis.

Q: Is this financial assistance a one-time relief or may I apply again in the future?

A: We can’t answer that definitively right now. MPTF will need to see the level of demand for financial assistance under the parameters that have been set and then determine if there is funding for additional relief. Given the uncertainties around the duration of this situation, our advice today would be to assume that it is one-time.

MPTF IS PROUD TO ASSIST IATSE MEMBERS
DURING THIS TIME OF UNCERTAINTY

We thank IATSE International President Matthew Loeb and the IATSE Executive Board for trusting us, The Actors Fund, and Actors Fund of Canada to take care of their members during this crisis.

 

“These charities have been assisting and supporting IATSE members and entertainment industry workers for a very long time,” Loeb said. “They understand the needs of these workers, and, are perfectly situated to act as our partners to help those experiencing hardship caused by the current health crisis.”

 

If you are an IATSE member in need, please call our intake line at 323 634 3888 for assistance. 

NETFLIX FOCUSES ASSISTANCE ON
BELOW THE LINE WORKERS

As production in Hollywood ground to a stop almost overnight, and even the work that day- players might get to fill in has evaporate in unison, Netflix steps up with a generous offer of assistance.

 

“Based on my brief conversations with them,” said Beitcher, “this was something on their minds from the moment production started shutting down.” Adding, “as usual, it’s go big or go home— and they went very big with this.”

 

LA County has over 120,000 workers in the film industry, and about 258,000 in the broader entertainment sector. For nearly every job in the still broader creative sector (about 400,000), there is yet another job that either supports or is induced by it. The collective output of these jobs can amount to north of a quarter of LA County’s GDP. Not all such jobs have been upended by the coronavirus. But across the county, and with no end in sight, crew members, performers, caterers and more are struggling.” per dot.LA

 

Please call our intake line at 323 634 3888 for assistance.

DGA MEMBERS RECEIVE RELIEF FROM THE
DIRECTORS GUILD FOUNDATION

This fund supports DGA members affected by the industry’s shutdown with $1,000 financial relief grants. DGA members in good standing who were working on productions at the time of the suspension in March, or had a commitment to begin work on a production suspended at that time, will be eligible to apply for a grant if they have less than $10,000 in liquid assets, or if they have a demonstrated need.

 

“More help is on the way,” said DGF chair Todd Holland. “As productions remain shut down for an undetermined length of time due to COVID-19, there are members starting to feel the financial strain. This new Fund will help ease some of that burden.”

 

Please call our intake line at 323 634 3888 for assistance.

VIACOMCBS EMERGENCY RELIEF FUND

ViacomCBS has established a relief fund to help workers displaced by a shutdown of film and TV production due to the spread of the coronavirus pandemic. We thank ViacomCBS for trusting MPTF to administer a portion of their fund.

“One particularly challenging area in this period has been production, as we’ve unfortunately had to pause most of our TV and film production to protect the health and safety of our cast, crew and communities. This, in turn, has put at risk the livelihoods of our colleagues who help bring these stories to life,” said ViacomCBS CEO Bob Bakish. “In these uncertain times, giving back and supporting the well-being of our families, communities is more important than ever.”

See these frequently asked questions

Q:  What is the ViacomCBS COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund?

A: On April 9, ViacomCBS President and CEO Bob Bakish announced the creation of a $100 million fund to aid industry crewmembers, talent, and creatives working on ViacomCBS productions who have been impacted by the industry-wide shut down due to the COVID-19 virus.  The ViacomCBS COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund will support eligible non-staff/freelance workers affected by the shutdown with $1,000 financial relief grants. 

Q: Who will be administering the ViacomCBS Emergency Relief Fund?

A: MPTF (the Motion Picture and Television Fund) and the Actors Fund have been designated as the fund’s administrators. 

Q: How do I qualify for financial assistance from the ViacomCBS Emergency Relief Fund?

A: To qualify, an individual must:

  • Appear on the ViacomCBS list 
  • Meet an earnings threshold established by ViacomCBS
  • Have less than $10,000 in liquid assets (bank statements will be required)

Q: Who makes the eligibility determination?

A: The eligibility criteria is set forth by ViacomCBS based on an earnings threshold. Industry members who believe they qualify can call the MPTF intake line at 323-634-3888– or contact them through the website:  www.mptf.com for more information and to apply. An experienced MPTF social worker will help members determine if they are eligible by confirming they are on the approved list provided by ViacomCBS and assessing they meet the liquid assets guidelines. 

Q: Can you describe the application process?

A: The process begins with a call to the MPTF intake line at 323-634-3888. Please provide all the information requested at that time. An MPTF social worker will then reach out to those applying for the ViacomCBS relief fund to assess their eligibility and specific circumstances/needs. Applicants will be asked to provide basic demographic information. Next, the assigned social worker will walk the applicant through the process of applying for financial assistance, which includes the completion of a financial assistance application and providing current bank statements showing the most recent 30-day transaction history and account balances. The MPTF will work with ViacomCBS to confirm applicants meet the eligibility criteria set forth by ViacomCBS. If approved, the financial assistance will be granted directly to the applicants, who will be notified by their assigned social worker of the determination. 

Q: How long will it take from the time I apply and provide all the documentation to the time I am confirmed as eligible and get assistance?

A: This depends on the volume of calls MPTF is experiencing.  Current turnaround time is approximately 5-7 business days.

Q: What amount of financial assistance might I receive?

A: The ViacomCBS Emergency Relief Fund grants are $1,000. 

Q: If I am collecting unemployment or receiving any other kind of federal or state relief under recently passed legislation, am I still eligible for this financial assistance from ViacomCBS?

A:  Yes.  The ViacomCBS Emergency Relief Fund will supplement unemployment relief for those who are also eligible to receive grants. 

Q: If both members of my household are ViacomCBS eligible, are we each able to apply for financial assistance from the ViacomCBS Emergency Relief Fund and if eligible will we each receive the full amount of the grant?

A: Yes, and yes.  All those eligible for the ViacomCBS fund will be considered for this plan individually and grants will be determined and made on an individual basis.  If the household shares finances, a bank statement with less than $20,000 will be required to determine financial assistance. 

 Q: There are other entertainment industry emergency relief programs that have been announced, like those from the IATSE, SAG-AFTRA, the DGA, and Netflix.  Can I apply to those programs for financial assistance as well?

A: No.  Given the anticipated demand for financial support, we are working with these organizations to limit the support to individuals right now to a single grant of $1,000.  We must do the most good for the most impacted of our entertainment community right now.

Q: Is this financial assistance a one-time relief or may I apply again in the future?

A: We cannot answer that definitively right now. We will be closely monitoring the disbursements of ViacomCBS grants under the established parameters to determine the possibility for additional relief.

CAST & CREW SUPPORTS EMPLOYEES
ACROSS US AND CANADA

This fund supports current and furloughed employees of Cast & Crew and its affiliated companies (CAPS, Checks & Balances payroll, FinalDraft, Media Guarantors and Media Services) that have been impacted by the recent shutdown in production related to the COVID-19 crisis.

Eric Belcher, CEO of Cast & Crew announced the Cast & Crew COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund. Click here for FAQs about the fund. If you are a a current or furloughed Cast & Crew employee in search of assistance, please call our intake line at 323 634 3888 for assistance.

See these frequently asked questions

Q: What is the Cast & Crew COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund?

A: On April 27th, Cast & Crew CEO Eric Belcher announced the creation of the Cast & Crew COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund. Both current and furloughed employees of Cast & Crew and its affiliated companies (CAPS, Checks & Balances Payroll, Final Draft, Media Guarantors and Media Services) will be eligible to participate. The fund will consist of contributions made by the combined Cast & Crew companies’ executive teams. It was created to support the Cast & Crew family across the United States and Canada who have been impacted by the recent shutdown in production related to the COVID-19 virus.

Q: Who will be administering the Cast & Crew COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund?

A: MPTF (the Motion Picture and Television Fund, www.mptf.com) will be administering the fund for Cast & Crew.

Q: How do I qualify for financial assistance from the Cast & Crew COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund?

A: Given that the aim of the fund is to help Cast & Crew and its affiliated companies’ employees with the greatest need, there are several key pieces for eligibility. Step one is providing proof of employment (available to current employees and furloughed employees). Once confirmed, we also need to see that you have earned in excess of $6,500 from your date of hire. Once eligibility status is established, a social worker will work with employees to determine their need for financial assistance. Employees will need to document that they have less than $10,000 in liquid assets at the time of applying to be eligible for assistance.

Q: Who makes the eligibility determination?

A: MPTF has been designated as the fund administrator and will work with the Cast & Crew management team on this matter.

Q: Are employees from Cast & Crew’s affiliated companies eligible for the program?

A: Yes. It is available to current and furloughed employees of Cast & Crew, CAPS, Checks & Balances Payroll, Final Draft, Media Guarantors and Media Services. Entertainment industry employees paid by Cast & Crew or any of our companies as an Employer of Record are not eligible.  

Q: Can you describe the application process?

A: The process begins with a call to the MPTF hotline at (323) 634-3888. Please provide the information requested at that time. Employees will receive a return phone call from an MPTF social worker who can assess their eligibility and specific circumstances/needs. Employees will be asked to provide proof of employment (a pay stub from Cast & Crew or any of their affiliated companies). Next, the assigned social worker will confirm that the employee has earned $6,500 or more from their date of hire. Then, the social worker will walk the employee through the process of applying for financial assistance, which includes the completion of a financial-assistance application and providing the following information: current bank statements showing the most recent 30-day transaction history and account balances. If approved, the financial assistance will not go to the employee directly but will cover outstanding bills, so MPTF will need a copy of these as well. Employees will be notified by their assigned social worker of the determination.

Q: How long will it take from the time I apply and provide all the documentation to the time I am confirmed as eligible and get assistance?

A: This depends on the volume of calls MPTF is experiencing. Current turnaround time is approximately five to seven business days. 

Q: What amount of financial assistance might I receive?

A:  The Cast & Crew COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund grants are approximately $1,000. As mentioned above, these grants do not go directly to employees but rather to those designated vendors (banks for mortgages or car payments, landlords, utility company, student loans, healthcare providers or insurers) you provide MPTF. 

Q: If I am collecting unemployment or receiving any other kind of federal or state relief under recently passed legislation, am I still eligible for this financial assistance from my union?

A: Yes. The Cast & Crew COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund will supplement any other form of relief its employees are receiving as a result of the loss of work from the COVID-19 virus. 

 Q: If both members of my household are employees of Cast & Crew or any of its affiliated companies, are we each able to apply for financial assistance from the Cast & Crew Emergency Relief Fund and if eligible will we each receive the full amount of the grant?

A: Yes, and yes. All eligible employees of Cast & Crew and any of its affiliated companies will be considered for this plan individually and grants will be determined and made on an individual basis. If the household shares finances, we will be looking for a bank statement with less than $20,000 to determine financial assistance.

Q: Is this financial assistance a one-time relief or may I apply again in the future?
A: We cannot answer that definitively right now. This will be determined by the number Cast & Crew and its affiliated companies’ employees who qualify for the financial assistance under the parameters that have been set. We will then determine if there is funding for additional relief. Given the uncertainties around the duration of this situation, our advice today would be to assume that it is one-time.

SAG-AFTRA’s IACF PROVIDES DISASTER
RELIEF TO PERFORMERS 

 This fund supports SAG-AFTRA performers affected by the industry’s showdown with $1,000 financial relief grants. Priority is given to performers that have worked under any SAG-AFTRA agreement. Performers will be eligible to apply for a grant if they earned either: 1) 3 of the last 5 years at $6,500 per year; or 2) at least 10 of any 20 years of their career at $5,000 per year.

Please call our intake line at 323 634 3888 for assistance.

FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE AVAILABLE
FOR WESTWORLD CAST & CREW

This fund provides emergency financial assistance from Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy for the staff on their production, Westworld, for needs created or complicated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Please call our intake line at 323 634 3888 for assistance.

THE COMEDY STORE FAMILY FUND
PROVIDES ASSISTANCE TO EMPLOYEES & COMEDIANS

MPTF and The Comedy Store have partnered up to create The Comedy Store Family Fund with proceeds benefiting their employees and comedians.  The Comedy Store, led by chief executive officer Peter Shore, will be providing funding under a two-year grant and, in turn, MPTF will be supporting the initiative with a full-time social worker dedicated to the comedian community. Services will include emergency financial assistance, counseling and referrals, health care and insurance guidance, senior care, and more

For 46 years, The Comedy Store has cultivated and celebrated the artistry of stand-up comedy. Founded by comedian Sammy Shore in 1972, the late Mitzi Shore took over the club in 1974 and turned it into the birthplace for a generation of comedians who began their careers on the Hollywood night club’s stage, many who went on to become stars.  It is the first and greatest all stand-up comedy night club in the world.

To learn more, call (818) 861-3939.

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