USAN, Unite for Strength and member leaders from around the country created the Micro Budget Agreement to shorten the time it takes to do union paperwork and simplify the process for member creators, producers and staff. Our Low Budget Committee saw the need for this as social media short projects exploded, taking too much staff time and effort to get very low-budgeted member-driven projects off the ground.

We worked with staff to help create a one-and-done page to register the project and get creating. Similar to the old Experimental contract that existed years ago, we wanted staff to be able to concentrate on bigger budget projects while members and creators could have very simple ease of use to make their project union, requiring as little time as possible for projects requiring quick turnaround.

Micro Budget is for projects under 20K and is meant only for free to the consumer platforms like YouTube, Vimeo, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. It’s perfect for film festivals, demos, and classrooms. There are a few firewalls like no nudity/sexual situations and no stunts, and the terms are negotiable. It may be used for scripted or unscripted projects but cannot be used for commercials or animation.

If you want those items in your project and it’s under 50K then SPA would be where you would go for your project. Getting started on a Micro Budget Project is easy. Visit Getting Started on your Micro Budget contract and file your project with the union here.  You are required to explain the micro terms to your actors.

SPA (Short Project Agreement) is another low budget contract driven by our response to members’ needs for projects under 40 mins and those projects under 50K. Learn more here.