BY:Steven Beer, Jake Levy & Neil Rosini
This Q&A was originally published in the Fall 2017 issue of Documentary magazine, a publication of the International Documentary Association, a nonprofit media arts organization based in Los Angeles.
The application for E&O insurance requires the producer to list the name and contact information of their media/clearance attorney and to certify that attorney as well as the producer have read and will follow the carrier’s clearance procedures. Those procedures typically require that an attorney monitor the production and, at the editing stage, vet for potentially defamatory content, use of copyrighted third party material not defended by fair use, and the use of individuals’ names and likenesses and recognizable businesses and locations that might be actionable. Also, E&O insurance applications generally require an opinion letter from an attorney affirming that the film’s title and use of content on a fair use basis is defensible.