Reporting pension and health contributions
- Week ending and report due dates. Reports must designate the week ending date (a Sunday). Reports and contributions are due no later than the Friday after the Sunday ending the week in which work was performed. Electronic reports which contain the required information are also accepted.
- One report for each week / show. Each contribution report must include information for only one show and only one week ending date. If the contribution report is a revision, only include the revised information.
- Production title and agreement numbers. The title of the production and your 10-digit agreement number must appear on all contribution reports.
- Names and Social Security numbers. Social Security numbers, as well as professional names, for all cast members MUST be included. Do not include actors’ corporation numbers. You must also include the pensionable salary for each cast member.
- Submit a single check (or ACH payment) payable to “Equity-League Funds.” Payments for pension and health contributions MUST be paid with a single check that includes your 10-digit agreement number. (401(k) contribution payments, which are described in the following section, should be paid with a separate check.) If a theater operates under two separate contract agreements (such as a LOA/PP contract and an SPT contract), contribution payments may NOT be combined.
- Interest charged for late contributions. Interest will be assessed on pension and health payments received three weeks (or two weeks for 401(k) payments) after the week ending date. Such interest will be assessed at the prime rate issued on the most recent Jan. 1 or July 1 plus 2%.
- Payment address. All pension and health contribution payments and reports (as well as 401(k) contributions and reports) should be sent to the Equity-League Benefit Funds office at the following address:
165 W 46th St., 14th Floor
Attn: Equity-League Benefit Funds Accounts Receivable Department
New York, NY 10036
Reporting 401(k) contributions
Employer Contributions. Employers that agree to an employer contribution must contribute an amount equal to 3% of the participant’s weekly compensation, up to a maximum contribution per participant of $225 per week (the maximum weekly compensation of $7,500 times the employer contribution of 3%).
Compensation includes contractual salary, overtime, unused vacation, unused sick leave, and overscale expenses and per diems. Vacation pay must be reported for any pay period in which the actor was on vacation. Unused vacation pay may be reported on the week ending report that corresponds to the date the payment was issued.
The federal government limits the annual amount of compensation per employer that may be considered for determining contributions for a participant. For 2018, the annual amount is $275,000. Therefore, the maximum employer contribution for a participant for 2018 is $8,250 (3% times $275,000).
Employers that have allocated tax relief for pension purposes and have accumulated tax relief in excess of the obligations to the Pension Fund may allocate from such surplus. The amount which may be allocated is equal to 2% of each actor’s salary (with a maximum salary $7,500) and must pay a direct contribution of 1% of the salary to the 401(k) Fund. An employer in the process of accumulating tax relief must continue to make contributions of 3% until sufficient funds are accumulated to cover the 2% contribution on salary. Equity-League Benefit Funds will notify employers of any refunds that are due after enough tax relief has accumulated to cover the 2% contribution.
Employee (deferral) contributions: In addition, participants may choose to defer a minimum of 1% of their pre-tax weekly compensation up to a weekly maximum of $7,500.
Please note that although a 3% employer contribution is due on all overscale per diem, participants may not defer overscale per diem towards the 401(k) Plan unless the overscale per diem is taxable. The participant may change salary deferral contributions at any time, or choose not to defer any part of their salary.
The federal government limits the maximum amount of salary that can be deferred to retirement plans. For 2018, the maximum amount of salary that participants can defer for all employers is $18,500. Participants who are 50 or older are eligible to defer an additional $6,000 for 2018. The $7,500 maximum weekly compensation limit does not apply for such additional deferrals.
Actors who are incorporated (employed through corporations) are eligible for employer contributions; however, they are not eligible for salary deferrals.
401(k) employee-only (deferral) contributions (with no employer contributions): Participants who are covered by a 401(k) agreement that allows for only employee contributions through salary deferral may choose to contribute to the 401(k) plan. The same requirements apply to the deferral contributions section as outlined above.
The Equity-League Benefit Funds Accounts Receivable Department will track the employer and/or deferral contributions made on behalf of participants and notify you if and/or when the annual contribution limits are reached.
In addition to the required information outlined in item No. 4 of the instructions for reporting pension and health contributions, as well the items listed above, the percentage being deferred by the participant, and the contribution amount deferred by the participant, should be included on the contribution report.
Participants may use the Deferred Salary Agreement forms to defer pre-tax compensation as outlined above. The participant and the employer must retain copies of this form after it is completed and signed. A third copy of the Deferred Salary Agreement must be filed with the Equity-League Benefit Funds Office. You may download and print Deferred Salary Agreement forms from our website. Or, you may contact the Equity-League Benefit Funds office to request additional deferral forms.
If you have any questions, please contact the Equity-League Benefit Funds Accounts Receivable Department at (212) 869-9380 (New York City) or toll free outside of NYC (800) 344-5220
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