News & InfoEP StoreAcademySupportCommunityProducts by Country
Legal & Compliance Home

Terms to Include in UK Crew Contracts

Common terms which studios and production companies include in their UK crew contracts.
May 3, 2022

Crew contracts usually include a number of standard terms, such as those covering rates, fees and expenses, the working day and week, holiday pay, pension entitlements, and right to work.

But there are a number of additional terms which production companies may want to consider including in certain situations. Here’s a list of some of the most common contract terms in the film and TV industry and what they mean.

Producer discretion whether to use contribution

In some circumstances, a crew member may seek to argue a loss of opportunity or loss of income if a production is not exploited. As a result, many crew agreements contain a provision specifically acknowledging that the exploitation of the production will ultimately be at the production company’s discretion.


A warranty is a contractual promise about a particular state of affairs. For example, almost all contracts will contain a warranty that the relevant party is authorized to enter into the agreement in the first place. Other warranties may include:

  • That the crew member is entitled to work in the UK
  • That any contribution made by the crew member will be original and won’t infringe any third party’s rights
  • That the crew member has read, understood, and agreed to all accompanying contractual policies

Warranties are fundamental in underpinning the other obligations of a party under an agreement.  


Indemnities are sometimes confused (or grouped together) with warranties, but they are different. A warranty is a promise about a particular state of affairs (e.g., “I promise that I will not infringe any IP rights in performing my services”).

A warranty is supported by an indemnity; if a crew member is in breach of a term of the contract, they back their warranty with a promise to pay, on a dollar-for-dollar (or pound-for-pound) basis, the loss suffered (e.g., “if I do infringe third party IP rights in providing my services and it causes you a loss, you can raise an invoice for the loss and I will reimburse you”).

That isn’t to say that the absence of an indemnity means that a party has no recourse for compensation under breach of contract. However, the indemnity effectively makes it easier for a party to recover its losses.

Indemnities are not always appropriate and are often subject to heavy negotiation.


Crew contracts should appropriately deal with how the fees will be taxed (i.e., if tax and national insurance will be deducted at source). Ordinarily, fees are expressed as the gross sum and then subject to the relevant deductions. For self-employed engagements, you should seek a tax indemnity, making it clear that any tax obligations are the responsibility of the personal service company or individual.

For more information on your tax obligations, review our guide to IR35 for production.

Working with children

Regardless of whether the crew member will actually work with children, it’s advisable to include a provision stating that they’ve never been cautioned or convicted of criminal offences, or in any way disciplined, in relation to conduct with children. The clause may also require the crew member to submit to a DBS check (the results of which must be satisfactory) before they can start work.

No injunctive relief

The purpose of this clause is to acknowledge that although a party may have some “equitable” remedies by way of an injunction, this is not economical in the film and TV industry. The essence of this clause is to say that in the event that the production company is in breach of contract, the crew member acknowledges the disproportionate impact of the injunction on the production and therefore agrees that damages is an adequate remedy. Note that the existence of this clause doesn’t prevent a party from seeking an injunction and, equally, the absence of this clause doesn’t automatically entitle a party to an injunction.

No authority to bind the producer

Crew members and HoDs are given various levels of authority in order to perform their tasks on a day-to-day basis. They may sometimes perform roles that suggest they have the authority to bind the production company when negotiating with external parties. This clause is therefore important to clarify that the crew member doesn’t have the power to bind the production company.

Assignability of contract

The film and TV industry often involves the transfer of benefits under contracts “up the chain” to a parent, commissioner, or other third party. As a result, the production company must be able to assign (or “transfer”) its rights under the contract to another party. It should be noted that under English law, if the contract is silent on this, the default legal position is that the production company can assign its benefits under the agreement.

Given the default legal position, it’s important to state that the crew member cannot assign their benefits under the agreement as the benefits (e.g., credit or right to payment) should be personal to the crew member.


So-called “boilerplate” provisions should always be included towards the end of a contract.

COVID-19 terms

There are also a number of terms which production companies should include in their crew contracts to help minimise the impact of any future COVID-19 restrictions. For more information, see Contracting in a Covid-19 world.

For more information on contracting crew in the UK, see Getting your crew contracts in place: A guide for UK productions.

Topic: UK

Related Content


Contracting in a COVID-19 World  

The pandemic has affected how UK production companies contract crew. Here’s how to reduce the impact of...
Topic: COVID-19
cell phone with sticky note stating sign here

Six e-Consent Myths (and Why They’re Not True)

Sheridans Associate, Sarmad Saleh, debunks some common e-consent myths.
Topic: Legal

Six Elements for Enforceable UK Crew Contracts

Although parties to a crew contract can largely enter into whatever terms they choose, certain elements...
Topic: UK
EP Blog_SQUARE_Fighting Hollywood Stereotypes-TTEI

Fighting Stereotypes and Rethinking Representation

How TTIE is advancing authentic storytelling in Hollywood by empowering historically excluded writers and...
KJ Lamb and Simon Donovan

Empowering the Next Wave of Production Accountants

The EP Production Portal team was delighted to participate in the biannual Netflix Assistant Production...
recycling conversation

Sustainability in Production: Q&A with Nikki Saunders

Nikki Saunders on sustainable filming practices, COVID-19, and why carbon offsetting isn’t a...
Oklahoma route 66 sign

A New Frontier in Filmmaking

Oklahoma is becoming a production destination, thanks to new incentives and infrastructure programs.

The UK GDPR and how Productions can Reduce their Exposure - Q&A with Sheridans

Sheridans’ Associate Krishan Neelendra answers key UK GDPR questions from production companies and...
Topic: UK
EP Blog_SQUARE_meet the cinematographer-dan-laustsen

Meet the Cinematographer

A conversation with Dan Laustsen ('John Wick', 'Nightmare Alley').
Bradley Cooper-nightmare alley

Meet the Assistant Director

A conversation with Myron Hoffert ('Nightmare Alley')
International Film Financing panel-featured

Film Financing Explained: International Financing

International production experts discuss how producers can utilize financing systems outside of the US,...
EP Blog_SQUARE-Sound Mixer-Lora Hirschberg

Meet the Sound Mixer

A conversation with Oscar-winning re-recording mixer, Lora Hirschberg ('Inception', Skywalker Sound)
Crew contracting in the UK-panel

Quick and Compliant Crew Contracting in the UK

Neisha Glynternick and Sarmad Saleh from UK-based entertainment law firm Sheridans discuss crew...
Topic: Legal

Meet the Set Decorator

A Conversation with Claire Kaufman ('Little Women')

Creating a Winter Wonderland

How ‘Elf’ Production Designer, Rusty Smith, Produces the Perfect Snowy Scenes for Film and Television

Meet the Editor

‘Chucky’ editors Randy Bricker and Shiran Amir on navigating the entertainment industry and how they...

The Psychology of Terror

How our deepest personal fears inspire cinematic monster makers Todd Masters and Steve Wang

How to solve a compounding problem?

The perennial shortage of production accountants has been made worse by the competition for resources, but...
Bloomberg tax logo-Newsroom-Thumbnail

Remote Workforces Create New Employment Challenges for Employers

Employers should be aware of any local tax obligations for employees working remotely.

UK GDPR Compliance for Productions: Q&A with Sheridans

Special category data, liability, data transfers and reporting - Sheridans answer your questions on the UK...
Topic: UK

Producing with Purpose

Creative Producer, Kimberly Goodman ('Selling Sunset', 'Project Runway'), shares insights on creating...
EP Blog_The Race to Net Zero is On for Big Studios

The Race to Net Zero is On for Big Studios

Film and television studios are embracing the green movement in a big way. Here’s what you can expect to...
Master Series Panel-Solving the crew shortage

Solving the Crew Shortage

Learn how EP Academy, the Georgia Film Academy, Reel Works, the New Mexico Film Office, and others, are...
EP Blog_SQUARE-Tips for tax day

Tips for Tax Day 2022

Your ultimate tax filing checklist - the deadline this year is Monday, April 18th!

Georgia Proposes Capping and Prohibiting Sale of Film Tax Credits

The changes, if signed into law, would cap the amount Georgia hands out in film and TV tax credits at $900...
EP Newsroom-Thumbnail-Portland Business Journal

How Oregon’s updated film incentive law could boost the local economy

A new Oregon film and media incentive law could draw more movie productions to the state.
EP Blog_Marge Dean

Opening Career Doors

How WIA President, Marge Dean, is shaping the future of animation and empowering underrepresented genders
Master Series Women in Animation-thumbnail

Women in Animation: A 3D View

Marge Dean, Mandy Tankenson, and other women leaders from across animation come together to celebrate...
EP Blog-proud to support-square

Proud to Support: Celebrating Client Nominations at the 94th Academy Awards

A look at the evolution of the Oscars and the notable films powered by Entertainment Partners technology.
Digging Out of a Deficit-featured

Digging Out of a Deficit: What to Expect in the Second Quarter of 2022

Federal and State Unemployment Insurance rates are rising. Learn how these changes will affect 2022 and...
International Financing-John Hadity-ft

The Beginner’s Guide to International Film Financing

What to know before you begin an international financing plan

Meet the Executive Producer

A conversation with Mike Drake ('Just Mercy') on the path to becoming and EP, and the role of social...
Los Angeles Times logo-sq

Why the Cherokee Nation is Offering Rebates to Film in Oklahoma

Joseph Chianese speaks to the LA Times on new incentive
EP Blog_SQUARE_Island Incentives

A Ticket to Paradise

Island Incentives Bring Productions Ashore

35 Production Accounting Terms You Should Know

Ready to test your production accounting vocabulary knowledge? See how many of these 35 common terms you...
Future-of-production-virtual stages

The Future of Film and Television Production

Virtual stages, remote production offices, and other advances in technology drive the evolution of...

How Costumes, Hair, and Makeup Tell the 'House of Gucci' Story

Talented production crew leaders Marco Alzari, Federica Castelli, Stefania Pellegrini, and Romina Ronzani...
2022 Budgeting-sq

Budgeting for 2022: A Production Accountant's Guide

EP's Payroll Tax, Production Incentives, and Business Development experts explain how inflation,...
Master Series: Budgeting for 2022-1

Budgeting for 2022: What Productions Need to Know

From unemployment taxes and worker's compensation to the price of labor and materials, production costs...

Film Commission Report Highlights Covid Costs as Production Ramps Up

Covid-compliance measures impact production budgets, estimating $90 million or more
MPI Contribution Processing Compliance Program-sq

Master Series Special Event: MPI Contribution Processing Compliance Program

MPI shares important updates to the benefits administration and compliance program, coming March 7, 2022
EP BLOG_Payroll_Cleanup_Becky_Harshberger_sq

Everything You Need to Know About End-of-Year Production Payroll Cleanup

Reconciling payroll errors and generating accurate W-2s can be a tedious process. These proactive steps...

Kickstart Your Production Career with the EP Academy

From Production Accounting basics to technology certifications, EP’s online courses offer one-of-a-kind...

Why Accurate Payroll Tax Withholding Matters to Film Budgets

Wendy Black, EP’s Vice President of Incentive Operations, shares tips for ensuring your production...
Best Practices for Year-End Payroll Cleanup-Panelists-sq

Best Practices for Year-End Payroll Cleanup

Payroll tax expert Becky Harshberger shares best practices to help production accounting teams prepare for...
john hadity-beginners guide to hybrid film financing

The Beginner's Guide to Hybrid Film Financing

How to successfully navigate working with foundations and investors to finance your next social-impact...
John Hadity-Sandra Schulberg-Hybrid Financing Master Series

Film Financing Explained: Hybrid Financing

Sandra Schulberg joins John Hadity for a spirited discussion on Hybrid Financing and how filmmakers can...
Master Series Thumbnail-Best practices for accurate payroll tax withholding

Best Practices for Accurate Incentive Payroll Tax Withholding

Learn how payroll tax withholding impacts a production incentive or film tax credit, and how productions...

Mission: NOT Impossible

Production incentives give producers options, increase infrastructure development and jobs promoting...
Identity Security Film Production-sq

Identity Security in Production

5 Strategies to Manage Risk and Resist Cyberattacks in the Entertainment Industry
5 top payroll tax errors-Becky Harshberger

5 Top Payroll Tax Errors and How to Prevent Them

Production payroll can be a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be! Payroll Tax expert Becky Harshberger...
Christine Davila, Jairo Alvarado, Sonia Gambaro

Authentic Latinx Storytelling Starts with Inclusion

Christine Dávila, Jairo Alvarado, and Sonia Gambaro work to amplify the talents of underrepresented...

Streamers and the Changing Landscape of Film Distribution

Director/Producer Daniel Farrands on strategies for success in the time of VOD

Meet the Paymasters

The hard-working payroll professionals behind Hollywood's paychecks

Film Financing Explained: Soft Money Financing

Vivian Hua joins our panel of financing and incentive experts to discuss funding film and television...
Canadian flag

5 Things to Know Before Working in Canada

Prepare for your next job in Canada with this checklist of payroll considerations
Topic: Canada

New Terms Under Return-To-Work Agreement

RTW extension includes new two-part delineation, and the role of the vaccine
Topic: Legal
 John Hadity-Guide to Soft Money Financing-sq

The Beginner’s Guide to Soft Money Financing

How filmmakers can capitalize on incentives, film funds, and more to finance their next project

Designing for Horror

Daniel Farrands and Andrew Murdock share insights on how filmmakers create fear through visual techniques

Digital Production Studio

Production Finance StudioProduction Management StudioEnterprise Management Hub

EP Sites

Central CastingEntertainment PartnersEP StoreSyncOnSetThe Production CommunityWe Got POP
Subscribe now

Be an industry insider with EP's
newsletters and alerts

LegalPrivacy NoticeSecurity
© 2022 Entertainment Partners. All rights reserved.