PUERTO RICO: A WORLD OF FILM

The whole world within your reach…Puerto Rico has played the part of more than 20 different countries and cities all over the world. WE DO Cuba, Brazil, Bolivia, Qatar, Costa Rica, Vietnam, Miami, Africa, Los Angeles, Dubai, Mumbai, Iraq, Kuwait, Bahamas, Colombia, Chile, Hawaii, New Mexico, Grenada, The Bronx (NYC) and more. 

ABOUT US

A Commonwealth of the United States, Puerto Rico offers all the benefits and protections available on the U.S. mainland, including applicability of U.S. labor, safety and minimum wage laws, U.S. intellectual property and banking protections and U.S. Dollar currency. No U.S. passport is required to travel to Puerto Rico by United States citizens. Foreign nationals will be subject to the same immigration requirements imposed for entry into the continental United States by U.S. Customs and Border Protection agencies.

  • U.S. Jurisdiction
  • Population: 3,285,874 (2020 Census)
  • Languages: Spanish & English
  • Direct flights to and from major cities
  • Time zone: Atlantic Standard (AST)

GEOGRAPHY

Centrally located in the heart of the Caribbean, with roughly 3,500 square miles of terrain, including various outlying islands, and over five hundred years of history at the crossroads of European and American cultures, Puerto Rico also offers a diversity of geographic resources and locations within a few hours’ drive of each other, including 350 miles of coastline, plains, mountains, jungles, dry forests, rivers, lakes and waterfalls, and colonial, urban and modern architecture.

WEATHER

Puerto Rico is in the tropical climate zone. With little variation between the seasons, the climate is as close to perfect as it can get, averaging 83F (22.7C) in the winter and 85F (22.4C) in the summer. In other words, it is always summer! Because of the island’s topography, both temperature and rainfall will vary greatly depending on where you are.  For a summary of the average temperature and rainfall in Puerto Rico’s North, South, East and West please refer to our website

The Atlantic Hurricane Season runs from June 1 to November 30. All productions shooting or planning to shoot during the Atlantic Hurricane Season should take all necessary precautions and be mindful of federal, state, and local warnings related to hurricane activity. The Puerto Rico Film Commission offers eligible film projects hurricane insurance coverage through its Hurricane Insurance Program.

Under the program, selected film projects will receive insurance policies from an A+ Best rated insurer that will indemnify production companies for extra expenses incurred as a direct result of bodily injury, property damage or delay due to hurricane force conditions. These policies directly fill in for the standard hurricane exclusions of coverage found in all the major carriers’ Entertainment Packages of Production Insurance during the Atlantic Hurricane Season (June 1 – November 30). For more information on coverage and how to apply, please contact the Puerto Rico Film Commission.

A WORLD OF OPPORTUNITY

  • Competitive tax incentive of 40% + 20%
  • Prime geographical location
  • Ease access to U.S., Latin-America, and Europe
  • All year-round perfect climate

A WORLD OF EXPERIENCE

  • Specialized and highly trained available labor
  • Fully bilingual
  • Film professionals with experience on nearly 1,000 productions since 1999 proud to shoot for the highest standards in filmmaking, plus state-of-the-art post-production facilities so you can produce your film project in Puerto Rico from start to finish
  • Major Hollywood unions have presence in Puerto Rico (DGA, SAG, IATSE)

A WORLD OF SUPPORT

  • Tax incentive program
  • Stable U.S. based political, financial, and legal system
  • Covid-19 pandemic protocols– recognized by Hollywood as one of the most efficient in the industry
  • Film Program of the Department of Economic Development and Commerce to help facilitate your production in Puerto Rico… We Speak Film!


Puerto Rico is the most exciting destination for your next film projects.  Take advantage of everything that we have to offer. Our Film Commission can help you with the following services:

  • Step-by-step assistance throughout the entire incentive’s application process
  • Liaison with all state and local agencies
  • Production assessment on:
    1. Locations: Fees for the use of state property are assessed on a by-case basis and often waived.
      1. Hotel tax waiver letter
      2. Government locations release letter
      3. Excise duty waiver letter for film equipment entering Puerto Rico
    2. Budget
    3. And all production aspects
  • $50,000 minimum spend requirement per project ($25,000 for short films)
  • No principal photography requirements (full or partial development, preproduction may qualify)
  • If 50% or more of principal photography is shot in the island, development payments to Puerto Rico Resident companies and individuals can qualify.
  • Payments made to Qualified Nonresident individuals are subject to a 20% withholding over the Puerto Rico sourced income.


OUR INCENTIVES (ACT 60 - 2019)

Production: Tax Credits

  • Up to 40% Production tax credit on all payments to Puerto Rico Resident Companies & Individuals
  • Up to 20% Production tax credit on all payments to qualified nonresident individuals
  • Persons engaged in qualifying film projects are eligible for the following preferential tax rates or exemptions:
  1. 4% and 10% Fixed Income Tax
  2. 100% Exemption on dividend taxes
  3. 90% Exemption from municipal and state taxes on property
  4. 100% Exemption from municipal license taxes and other municipal taxes

QUALIFYING FILM PROJECTS

  • Feature films
  • Short films
  • Documentaries
  • Television programs
  • Series in episodes
  • Mini-series
  • Music videos
  • National & international commercials
  • Video games
  • Post-production

HOW TO APPLY

Film Tax Decree Application Process

1. Submit your application through our online portal at: https://ogpe.pr.gov/freedom/ before the end of Principal Photography with the corresponding documents requested in the application for the Puerto Rico Film Commission to evaluate your project in a timely manner. *Please not that Google Chrome is the best internet browser for our online application program.

2. Following an approval, the DEDC Secretary will issue the film project a Decree of Tax Credits. For the Decree to become effective, the applicant is required to pay a mandatory filling fee equivalent of 1% of the Production Expenses of Puerto Rico, up to a maximum rate of two hundred and fifty thousand dollars ($250,000.00).

3. The first, 50% payment of the Filing Fee must be presented to the DEDC Secretary within 30 (thirty) working days from the date the Decree was issued. The 50% of the Filing Fee must be presented with a dully notarized sworn statement accepting the Decree. Failure to present evidence of payment and an acceptance of the Decree shall deemed as a revocation of the Decree and the tax credits reserved shall be forfeited.

4. Film Project’s with a Decree, must also comply with the following:

  1. Set visits for DEDC officials and any other government representatives which should be coordinated in good faith with the production
  2. Set photos and behind the scenes footage/photos must be provided to the DEDC Secretary during production for promotional use
  3. Screen credit requirement at the end credits of the Film Project
  4. A copy of the film project must be available when released for the DEDC Secretary’s promotional use
  5. Joint press releases, conferences and other press related matters are encouraged.


5. Following the payment and acceptance of the Decree, the applicant must begin Principal Photography within 120 (one hundred and twenty) days of the issuance of the Decree. This term may be extended with evidence of reasonable cause.

6. Following the completion of the Film Project, an Audit Report by a certified Puerto Rico public accountant must be presented to the DEDC Secretary ninety (90) days after wrap for Film Projects that are not undergoing postproduction in Puerto Rico. This ninety (90) day period may be extended by reasonable cause with an approval of the DEDC Secretary or representative. Before the presentation of the Audit Report, the Film Project must present evidence of payment of the remaining Filling Fee. The Audit Report and Auditor must comply with the Agreed Upon Procedures established by the DEDC Secretary.

7. The DEDC Secretary will evaluate the Report and may request any information necessary for purposes of determining if the Audit Report complies with the Code, Regulation, Administrative Orders, Circular Letters or Agreed Upon Procedures issued by the Government of Puerto Rico or any of its agencies and representatives.

8. Within thirty (30) days or less after receiving the Auditor's Report s, the DDEC Secretary will issue a Certification of Tax Credits based on the certification of expenses provided in the Audit Report subject to the maximum amount of tax credits established in the Decree. This thirty (30) day period may be interrupted if the DDEC Secretary requests additional information from the Auditor. 

Amazing things are happening in Puerto Rico…
Be part of our film ecosystem!


José Sánchez Acosta | Director | jose.sanchez@ddec.pr.gov | x 3433

Carla Cardona | Film Industry Tax Incentives Attorney | carla.cardona@ddec.pr.gov | x3241

Abdiel Angleró, MBA | Locations & Marketing Consultant | abdiel.anglero@ddec.pr.gov | x3142

Anysha Lugo | Production Coordinator & Special Projects | anysha.lugo@ddec.pr.gov | x3240


Office: 355 Roosevelt Ave., Hato Rey, P.R. 00918

Postal: P.O. Box 362350, San Juan, P.R. 00936-2350

Contact us: 787.758.4747

Email: prfilmcommission@ddec.pr.gov



WE DO FILM

ddec.pr.gov

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