Emergency Financial Assistance and Disaster Relief Fund

For SAG-AFTRA Members

Due to the extremely high volume of Emergency Financial Assistance applications we are currently receiving, between 50-100 per day, we ask you read ALL eligibility requirements below BEFORE you apply.

We can only offer Emergency Financial Assistance to those who can provide documentation they are currently in a financial crisis.

We want to help everyone who is eligible for emergency assistance, and we are prioritizing SAG-AFTRA members who are currently unable to pay for basic living expenses listed below. Please read the entire page before applying.

We are asking members who are able to cover their short-term costs to wait to apply.

Please be patient, it could take up to two (2) weeks to complete this process from application submission to receiving the emergency assistance grant.

The Foundation is making first round grants a PRIORITY. First time applicants must complete the application. This application is ONLY for those who have not received a grant since May 2, 2023.

We have also begun to make second round grants but due to the volume of applicants, we are reviewing second round grants in date order from your first grant. You will be notified by email if and when you are eligible to apply for a second grant. DO NOT fill out the initial application again. The email will include a link to an abbreviated application that is tied to your initial application and you will be required to upload your most current bank statement and other documents for consideration.

Please be patient and wait for us to email you. We are working as quickly and thoroughly as possible.

The Foundation offers several Emergency Financial Assistance Programs to eligible, dues-paying SAG-AFTRA members who are in urgent financial need due to an unexpected life crisis, such as a natural disaster, accident, health crisis creating a financial burden, loss of work due to an illness, loss of work due to a strike or production shut down, loss of housing due to an eviction, death in the family, or other emergency crisis situations described in IRS guidelines which pertain to providing emergency financial assistance grants to individuals.

Loss of work due to a production shutdown or strike alone does not qualify an individual for a grant under this program unless the member can show that the resulting loss of work has created an immediate financial crisis or hardship. The Foundation will review and assess applications, including financial information and documentation, to make an objective determination of each member’s financial need.

Given the unconventional nature of working in the performing arts, where work is never a guarantee, many artists must rely on second and third jobs for income, and we are unable to provide Emergency Financial Assistance Grants simply due to lack of work or unemployment. Also of note, the Foundation is restricted from paying union dues or credit card debt with these emergency assistance funds.

In the application for an Emergency Financial Assistance Grant, members must explain the nature of the life crisis leading to financial hardship, as succinctly as possible, and show proof of the cause of the financial hardship (e.g. a copy of a 30-day notice given by a landlord or proof of an accident that has occurred) as well as tax returns, bank statements, bills, and/or other documentation that shows immediate and urgent financial need.

Please DO NOT SEND PHOTOS of injuries, surgeries or accidents. Only official medical documents with diagnosis and treatment plans are acceptable for review and consideration.

Emergency Financial Assistance Grants are also available to dues-paying, eligible SAG-AFTRA members who have contracted COVID-19 and have lost pay or a job due to a positive diagnosis. If you have been diagnosed with COVID-19 and are unable to audition, you may also qualify.

Members must be able to show proof of a positive COVID-19 lab test (not a home test) or a letter from a doctor confirming the diagnosis as well as written notification from their employer stating they are unable to work and will not receive pay, or notification that they are unable to return to work due to testing positive for COVID-19.

All applications are confidential and anonymous.

Please read through ALL of the eligibility requirements before applying for an Emergency Financial Assistance Grant. 

If you have questions, please email assistance@sagaftra.foundation. Please only use this general contact information if you have not been assigned to a case manager yet. If you have been assigned to a case manager already, please reach out to them directly. If you do not have their contact information, please be sure to reference them in your message so we can direct you to the right place.

In addition, the social services team at the Foundation has carefully created a list of additional emergency resources to help SAG-AFTRA members find more helpful resources and services during these difficult times. Please check back on a regular basis as the social services team continuously updates the resources list to meet your needs.

If you need help, ask.

If you can help, give.

The SAG-AFTRA Foundation is grateful to receive your tax-deductible donations to our Emergency Financial Assistance Programs.

Every donation counts and will provide critical relief to SAG-AFTRA members in urgent need.

Patricia Arquette, Adam Scott and Tramell Tillman Support the Disaster Relief Fund for SAG-AFTRA Members

The SAG-AFTRA Foundation has been recognized among U.S. nonprofits, by both Guidestar and Charity Navigator, for its commitment to accountability and transparency.