Industry news & Market trends

Corona crisis: assistance for artists and self-employed persons from the cultural and creative industries

Artists, companies and self-employed persons from the cultural and creative industries are being hit to the core by the Corona crisis. At this point we give you an overview of emergency aids and more. The list will be updated continuously. However, we would like to point out that the information is not legally binding, but we hope that we can help you here.

+++Breaking news+++ The Soforthilfe has been adjusted. There is now a single federal programme to which one can apply for Soforthilfe

Important note: Our own consulting services offered by the Kulturförderpunkt Berlin and Kreativwirtschaftsberatung Berlin will continue to take place, but by telephone.  

This week we are back again with our virtual and telephone consulting service:

­čĺ╗ 1st online group consultation via zoom:
Tuesday, April 7th, 2020 | 15.00-16.30.
Register here: https://bit.ly/2UQnGcy

­čô× 2nd telephone consultation hour
Mon, 06.04.2020 | 13-16.00
Tue-Thu, 07-09.04.2020 | 10-13.00

­čĺ╗ 3. Free online event with legal expert Sonja Laser
on 9. April from 15.00 to 16.30
 

You can reach us here: Kreativwirtschaftsberatung Berlin (030 24749-777); Kulturförderpunkt Berlin (030 24749-773)

 

CONTENT:

EMERGENCY MEASURES 
    EMERGENCY AID
    ARTISTS' SOCIAL INSURANCE (KSK)
    SERVICES OF THE FEDERAL EMPLOYMENT AGENCY
    SHORT-TIME WORK
    SUSPENSION AND REDUCTION OF TAX PAYMENTS
    FAILURE DOCUMENTATION
    CREDIT COLLECTION

HANDLING OF SUBSIDIES
    SENATE ADMINISTRATION FOR CULTURE AND EUROPE
    FEDERAL CULTURAL FOUNDATION

LEGAL ISSUES
    OBLIGATION TO FILE FOR INSOLVENCY
    CANCELLATION FEES
    COMPENSATION FOR QUARANTINE
    RENT PROTECTION
    FAQ

CONTACT PERSONS FOR THE INDIVIDUAL CREATIVE SECTORS

IMPORTANT INFORMATION ON THE NETWORK

WHAT ELSE IS PLANNED IN BERLIN
 



EMERGENCY MEASURES 
 

EMERGENCY AID

(1) Via the Gesellschaft zur Verwertung von Leistungsschutzrechten mbH (GVL), owners of a perception contract from the independent scene can apply for a one-off emergency grant of 250 euros if they have suffered loss of fees due to virus-related event cancellations. The prerequisite is that the applicants have participated in at least one regular distribution of the GVL. Proof of the loss of the event or production (confirmation/cancellation by the organizer or production, proof of loss of earnings) is also required. Those affected should contact the GVL directly if necessary.

(2) The crowdfunding platform Startnext has launched a crowdfunding aid campaign. Startnext has simplified the guidelines for crowdfunding and suspended the all-or-nothing principle. This means that every cent will now be paid out: Link. Other platforms like Gofundme have similar models to help corona victims.

(3) The German Orchestra Foundation has set up an emergency aid fund from which musicians can apply for immediate aid of up to 500 euros. There is also the possibility of making donations to support musicians of opera and concert houses. Further information can be found here

(4) In a two-stage programme, GEMA will provide financial assistance totalling around 40 million euros. The "Schutzschirm LIVE" is primarily aimed at composers and lyricists who are also performers and have run into financial difficulties due to cancellations of events throughout the country. The "Corona-Hilfsfonds" (Corona relief fund) provides financial transitional aid for individual cases of hardship within the framework of social and cultural support. Further information here.


ARTISTS' SOCIAL INSURANCE (KSK)

The Artists' Social Insurance Fund (KSK) has taken various measures for insured persons to cushion financial hardship. Among other things, it offers payment facilities, payment deferrals or even reductions in monthly advance payments. More details can be found here.


SERVICES OF THE FEDERAL EMPLOYMENT AGENCY

Self-employed persons have the possibility to register as unemployed, provided that they have taken out unemployment insurance. However, those who are registered as unemployed are not allowed to work - even if there are business orders again. Both at the same time is not possible. Those who do not have unemployment insurance can also apply for basic security (Arbeitslosengeld II), also known as Hartz IV. Further information can be obtained from the Federal Employment Agency.


SHORT-TIME WORK

Companies with at least one employee can apply for short-time work compensation. In the case of short-time work compensation, the Federal Employment Agency pays 60 percent of the lost net wage if a company sends its employees on short-time work. Employers are also to be reimbursed for social security contributions for the lost working hours. Employers can apply for short-time work compensation if at least 10 percent of the workforce is affected by a significant loss of work. The measure is intended to help companies retain employees in the event of a slump in business. Attention: Short-time work compensation is not available for marginally employed persons! Further information can be found on the website of the Federal Ministry of Finance


SUSPENSION AND REDUCTION OF TAX PAYMENTS

Upon application, current advance payments for income tax or corporation tax may be reduced or suspended. Tax payments due can be deferred and late payment surcharges can be waived. Enforcement measures can also be waived temporarily. Please contact the tax office responsible for you directly. More information here


FAILURE DOCUMENTATION

The Association of German Writers recommends all artists to document cancelled events so that they can be submitted in case of emergency funding. A sample template for the documentation can be found here.


CREDIT COLLECTION

The Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau (KfW) is currently providing an aid package that facilitates access to cheap loans for companies (also applies to freelancers and the self-employed). Further information can be found here.


HANDLING OF SUBSIDIES

You are currently implementing a project with the help of subsidies and have to cancel events and/or trips? There is no general rule on how this affects the accounting of the subsidies. We assume that the funding agencies will inform the project sponsors individually in the near future. Numerous associations are currently working to ensure that the current situation does not have a negative impact on the grant recipients and the cultural and creative workers involved. Those are your options currently: 

SENATE ADMINISTRATION FOR CULTURE AND EUROPE

For ongoing calls for proposals of the Senate Department for Culture and Europe, project applications can still be submitted online. However, it is currently open whether and when funding decisions can be made. For all those who have already received funding from the Senate Department for Culture and Europe, there is an information sheet on how to deal with funded projects affected by Covid-19. In any case there is an obligation to notify the projects. Further information.


FEDERAL CULTURAL FOUNDATION

The Federal Cultural Foundation has published the following article on its website regarding the handling of funding: "In principle, the costs incurred up to the point at which a project is discontinued are eligible for funding, even if planned events cannot take place. However, the project sponsors must make every effort to keep expenses as low as possible after cancellation. If you are able to postpone your events, we will try to make this possible by extending funding periods". Further information


LEGAL ISSUES
 

OBLIGATION TO FILE FOR INSOLVENCY

Until 30.09.2020, the Federal Government suspends the obligation for affected companies to file for insolvency. The regular three-week period of the Insolvency Code is thus no longer applicable. Further information


CANCELLATION FEES

Whether you receive a cancellation fee from the client depends on your individual contract conditions. Agreements made verbally or via SMS/WhatsApp are also valid. When concluding new contracts, make sure that there are regulations on contingency fees. If you have already provided partial services in a project, you are entitled to at least a pro-rata fee. Further important information can be found here.


COMPENSATION FOR QUARANTINE

In the case of an ordered quarantine, compensation is in principle possible. The Senate Department of Finance provides information on the question of whether freelancers also receive compensation in the event of quarantine.


RENT PROTECTION

In the coming week (week 14), the federal government plans to introduce a moratorium on tenant termination. This applies to both residential and commercial premises (source: Tagesspiegel, 21.3.2020). The German Tenants' Association is also campaigning for a solidarity fund to be set up ("Sicher-Wohnen-Fonds"). With the assumption of the rent by the fund, the termination of the tenancy because of payment arrears should be prevented.


FAQ

- Employment law implications of Corona: What do I need to know?
- Handling and processing of applications during the Corona pandemic: Information from the Berlin State Office for Immigration
- Is Corona a case of force majeure? What is the legal situation? 
- Härting Helpline: free initial telephone consultation on legal issues


CONTACT PERSONS FOR THE INDIVIDUAL CREATIVE SECTORS

-Information and contact persons in the Cultural Senate
-Information and contacts in the Economic Senate
-Information and contacts at Berlin Partner
-Information and contacts for the commercial economy IHK Berlin
-Information and contacts for the fine arts
-Information and contact persons for the performing arts 
-Information and contacts for filmmakers and the film industry
-Information and contacts for design, fashion and the design industry
-Information and contacts for club culture, orchestra music and the music industry
-Information and contact persons for the areas of literature and publishing  


IMPORTANT INFORMATION ON THE NETWORK

- Tips for startups from the Gründerszene.de
- Handout for the support of independent and freelance cultural workers from ver.di
- Handouts for artists from Touring Artists


WHAT ELSE IS PLANNED IN BERLIN

(1) Many small businesses in Berlin are run by people with a history of migration. In order to ensure that they too are specifically informed about the Immediate Action Programme, the Integration Commissioner has launched an information initiative. In cooperation with business associations and clubs, she provides information in various languages about the Emergency Aid II programme. The organisations also offer support in translating and filling out the forms. More information here.

(2) Berlin (a)live is online: The new digital platform brings culture into the living room and supports cultural workers due to cancelled gigs, empty facilities, and missing fees. Berlin (a)live is a project of the Senate Department for Culture and Europe and the Berlin agency 3pc. 

(3) The Clubcommission has launched a crowdfunding campaign to preserve Berlin clubs and created www.unitedwestream.berlin. Every day, a different club is streamed from the site. In addition to live broadcasts of DJ sets, live music and performances, United We Stream is also intended to become a platform for discussion rounds, lectures and films on club-cultural topics. In addition, the Club Commission is currently contacting banks and talking to the Cultural Senate in order to avert the impending collapse of large sections of the cultural industry (source: Zeit online, 12.3.2020).

(4) CityLAB Berlin has set up an ideas platform called "Hack the Crisis", where projects, proposals and challenges can be shared with others and comrades-in-arms can be found for their implementation.

(5) The Siemens Arts Foundation intends to support freelancers at museums with up to 25,000 euros.


CURRENT NEWS, SURVEYS AND PUBLICATIONS:

You can find them daily on Creative City Berlin here.

LET US KNOW AS SOON AS YOU LEARN ANYTHING NEW 

Give ourselves hints on new measures, tips, links and best practice ideas in times of Corona. We have set up a Google Doc for this purpose. The more we collect together, the more informed all scenes are about help and possibilities. [This way]

Category: Industry news & Market trends


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