Studio insurance is something a lot of artists go without. I am both under-insured, and unprepared for emergencies, so I’ve been online mucking about. Here’s what I found.
The Craft Emergency Relief Fund is a great resource for artists. You hear about this or that creator losing everything in a flood or fire, but never hear of cartoonists availing themselves of public services like this. We all need to be more aware of our rights and resources.
The site is offering a free series of webinars for teaching artists, trainers, and other professionals. CLICK HERE.
The organization also offers a handy studio preparedness reference kit called The Studio Protector Guide for Emergencies. This wall guide holds all your important resources and contact information. Proceeds go to benefit The Craft Emergency Relief Fund.
Here’s a handy video:
I’m of the opinion that keeping this in your studio is not necessarily the best idea. Maybe you should get two: one for the studio, and another for a safe place. If the studio burns down, you’ve lost your resources guide.
Finally, here’s a great “pocket guides” online resources for insurance targeted at a variety of artistic disciplines. Just click the prompts and the handy system will walk you through the steps to understanding what you need.
My medical costs have skyrocketed since I first wrote this post a few years ago on health insurance for artists.
I’ve restored some data, but the most important link is the Artists Health Insurance Resource Network, which has been folded back into The Actors Fund website.
CLICK HERE to go to a map of the United States. Then click your home state for an info-rich directory of resources.
This is the most comprehensive directory for creators of all kinds on the internet. You do not need to be an actor to avail yourself of The Actors Fund benefits. If you work in entertainment, you are eligible. New Yorkers who work in the entertainment industry have access to the Al Hirschfeld Free Health Clinic. This may include artists who have Warner or Marvel Entertainment on their resume. Check it out.
I am baffled, perplexed, yea and verily, utterly flummoxed when I hear of poor, starving artists going up against big bad corporations and nefarious industry individuals, and these poor creators are utterly unable to afford legal advice or representation, when I REPEATEDLY RECOMMEND THE VOLUNTEER LAWYERS FOR THE ARTS to them AS IF I AM CHANTING A FREAKING MANTRA!!!
By the way, I would like to point out that the person who first directed me to the VOLUNTEER LAWYERS FOR THE ARTS was Bill Mantlo, a former comics creator who took up the law as a public defender. Mantlo was badly injured in a freak accident while rollerblading and has been living with brain damage ever since.
Mantlo did me a great service, spent hours with me going over my case, helped secure me a link up with the VOLUNTEER LAWYERS FOR THE ARTS, and kept in touch with me until the matter was resolved. My total financial outlay over several year’s worth of legal struggles was only $1,000. I call that a bargain. It saved my project A Distant Soil.
I am eternally grateful to Bill Mantlo. Thank you for your kindness, your decency, and for giving me the information that I was able to pass along to other creators who also had very satisfactory results with the VOLUNTEER LAWYERS FOR THE ARTS.
In fact, the next time I donate to a legal fund, my money is going to the VOLUNTEER LAWYERS FOR THE ARTS.
VOLUNTEER LAWYERS FOR THE ARTS SERVICES, all right there online for anyone to read, any day, any time, for months and months and months:
VLA delivers legal services and legal information to over 10,000 members of the arts community each year. For more information call The Art Law Line : 212·319·ARTS (2787), ext.1
VLA plays an important role in educating individual artists, arts professionals within arts and cultural institutions, attorneys, students and the general public about legal and business issues that affect artistic and creative endeavors. For more information on our classes, workshops, and panels, please click here, or call our Art Law Line at at 212.319. (ARTS) 2787 x1.
From its inception, VLA has played an important role as an advocate on behalf of the arts community in different ways, ranging from participation in litigation, making public statements about matters of interest to the arts community, and making recommendations about pending legislation.
Art & Law Residency
As legal and judicial issues now permeate every aspect of social, political and cultural life, artistic production is no longer immune. The Art & Law Residency provides an intellectual and artistic setting for participants to engage in ongoing discussions and debates that examine the overlap and disconnect between artistic production and the law from historical, social, ethical and intellectual standpoints. Using law as both a discourse and medium, new visual artwork and critical writing will come into being through the Program. All the participants will also gain experience and knowledge they can carry into the future beyond the Program.
MediateArt pairs artists with mediators to mediate or resolve arts-related disputes outside the traditional legal framework. Through MediateArt, qualifying clients may elect to use this service for negotiation counseling as well as contract negotiations.
But wait! there’s more!
VLA serves artists and arts organizations in every discipline, including: acting, animation, architecture, book making, choreography, composition, three-dimensional design, costume design, craft and folk arts, dance, directing, fashion, film, graphic design, installation art, literary arts, modeling, multi-media, music, photography, playwriting, poetry, printmaking, screenwriting, sculpture, songwriting, theater, video arts, video game design, visual arts, and web design.
Access to VLA’s pro bono legal services is available to low-income artists and nonprofit arts organizations. VLA’s other services and programs are open to the entire arts community. For more information about VLA’s services, please call the Art Law Line at 212·319·ARTS (2787), ext. 1.
Wow. Look. Real money. Real lawyers. Real power. Real experience.
Really good idea.