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Suspension/Force Majeure – some points arising from conversations with agents

By Catherine Considine
Suspension/Force Majeure – some points arising from conversations with agents

I’ve had a lot of conversations with agents, following our PMA meeting last week. The following points respond directly to those discussions, and are additional to the notes that I sent earlier this week. I hope you will find them useful.

a. Very few agents have dealt with this sort of force majeure (FM) event. This is confusing for all of us, you are not alone.

b. An FM event makes no difference to the terms of agreements that have already been signed – which remains the agreed contract. This is the case whether or not the contract is on PACT/Equity terms.

c. You should not have to sign or “accept” any notice provided to you, amend any terms, or move to a “non-Equity” or amend any terms.

d. You should challenge any suggestion that Equity does not have jurisdiction outside the UK (this is not relevant) or that you need to sign anything that applies to work already done.

e. It is for the producer to prove that the suspension complies with the terms of contact already in place, and to manage the suspension in a reasonable manner.

f. There are a growing number of agent groups forming for each production, either through me, or independently. Do get on discussion chains. Ask me: I may be able to connect you. Or use the PMA forum. I’ll send out an updated list of productions which have an agent group later today.