AGMA Relief Fund Application "How-To" Guide
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Due to the devastating losses throughout our industry arising from the COVID-19 crisis, the AGMA Relief Fund is temporarily increasing the cap on aid, as well as providing direct aid to members in need. From now until April 10th, 2020, the cap is raised to $1,500 for regular aid, and $2,000 if it includes medical needs. All members of AGMA in good standing or on Honorable Withdrawal are eligible to apply for aid. If your membership in AGMA has lapsed, and you would like to reinstate your membership in order to be eligible to apply for aid, we encourage you to explore options that may reduce the cost associated with returning to good standing.
Reinstatement usually costs $350 ($250 reinstatement free + $100 annual basic dues for 2020), but...
1. If you were a member in good standing in 2019, and you renew by June 30, the fee is reduced to $175 ($75 reinstatement fee plus $100 annual basic dues).
2. If your membership lapsed due to a hardship, you may qualify for a one-time waiver of the reinstatement fee, bringing the cost to reinstate down to $100 for annual basic dues.
3. You may also qualify for the “Special Dues Category”, which reduces the annual basic dues from $100 to $39. You qualify for the reduced dues if you meet all of the following conditions:
• You have been a member of AGMA for at least 15 years (joined on or before January 1, 2005).
• You paid AGMA dues for at least ten years (consecutive or nonconsecutive).
• In 2019, you earned less than $250 from AGMA contracts.
• In 2019, you earned less than $1,000 from contracts across all the US performing arts unions (AGMA + SAG-AFTRA + Equity + AGVA). If you need help or have questions about reinstatement, write to
Candy Itow at email@example.com.
Before you begin the application process, please note:
This application is used to apply for assistance from multiple aid sources. Some of those aid programs require entertainment industry earnings documentation. This documentation is NOT required to apply for aid from the AGMA Relief Fund.
We recommend you add the following addresses to your email whitelist, so you don’t miss important correspondence pertaining to your application:
● @actorsfund.org (entire domain)
You’ll need proof of your AGMA membership to apply. You can either scan your AGMA membership card or request proof of membership (or honorable withdrawal) by writing firstname.lastname@example.org. Be sure to put “Proof of Membership” in the subject line. The application asks for your AGMA membership number. This can be found on your membership card. Alternatively, your membership number is also included on all dues invoices, which are sent via email with the subject line “AGMA Dues Invoice”.
Here are some tips for completing your application:
1. If you are eligible for assistance from both the AGMA Relief Fund and The Actors Fund (eligibility requirements at https://actorsfund.org/services-and-programs/entertainment-assistance-program) you can apply for aid from both programs simultaneously.
2. On the “Income” page of the application, the section “Approximate performing arts and entertainment income for the last five (5) years: (with year 1 being the most recent year)” is OPTIONAL if you are only applying for aid from the AGMA Relief Fund. You can enter approximate numbers, or enter 0 (zero) in all five fields. It will not affect your eligibility for aid.
3. On the “Assistance” page of the application, in the section labeled “Please describe how you have been affected. Include any extenuating circumstances (such as medical concerns)”, be sure to include any pertinent medical condition, disability, or medical expense, as this is your only opportunity to demonstrate eligibility for the additional aid (up to $2,000) available only to those with medical needs on the initial application.
4. Finally, upload the required documentation (bank statement, mortgage/lease, and AGMA membership card or emailed membership verification).
5. After you complete the application, your case will be passed on to a social worker from The Actors Fund who will be in contact with you, request any additional documentation that may be required to complete your application, and help direct you to other forms of aid you may qualify for.
If you have additional questions about the application process, email Alicia Cook at email@example.com.
This post represents our current understanding of the application process and will be updated as needed. As the raised cap on aid is slated to expire on Friday, April 10, we urge you to apply for assistance as soon as possible. The AGMA Soloist Coalition is actively lobbying for an extension to this deadline and expanded reinstatement fee waivers. We will keep you updated if any of these policies change in the days ahead. We are also seeking guidance on how AGMA members with foreign addresses can complete the application, since in its current form it requests a US address.