The Theatrical Production Tax Credit is a refundable credit against Maryland state income tax of 25% of qualified production costs incurred within the State by Theatrical Production entities. Estimated total direct production costs incurred in Maryland must exceed $100,000 to qualify. The maximum award cannot exceed $2 million for a single Theatrical Production.
The statute creating the Theatrical Production Tax Credit can be found here
. The statute also defines Theatrical Production entities that are eligible to apply for the credit as well as covered production costs.
BENEFITS The Theatrical Production Tax Credit provides a refundable credit of 25% against Maryland state income tax to eligible production entities for production costs such as set design and operation, special and visual effects, wardrobe, makeup, sound, lighting, lodging, vehicle leasing, etc.
ELIGIBILITY To qualify for the credit, the production must be a for-profit, National Touring or Pre-Broadway Production live stage theatrical production.
Additional qualification criteria for each type of production are as follows:
1) A National Touring Production:
- Must have at least two public performances; and
- After the production’s final performance (see above) is performed for a total of four weeks or more in at least four cities outside the State.
2) A Pre-Broadway Production:
- Must have at least eight public performances; and
- In the production’s original or adaptive version
- Has never been performed or or has been performed on a limited basis in the immediately preceding five years, and
- Is being prepared exclusively at the Qualified Theatrical Production Facility for a presentation in the Broadway theater district within twelve months after the production’s final performance in a Qualified Theatrical Production Facility.
Additional Qualification Criteria:
- All statutory requirements must be met.
- The submitted Application for Qualification must be complete and signed along with a completed Application Addendum.
- The Qualified Theatrical Production Entity must be able to demonstrate financing.
The application process is as follows:
- Prior to applying, it is recommended that you consult a tax specialist and/or a tax attorney regarding the potential tax impacts of receiving a Maryland Theatrical Production Tax Credit on your taxes or your company’s taxes.
- BEFORE beginning any work on the theatrical production activity in the State, an Application for Qualification MUST be submitted to the Department via email (email@example.com), along with ALL required attachments.
- Complete applications will be reviewed and approved in the order received. Applications that are materially incomplete will not be considered. Applications received prior to the time and date specified above will be ineligible and not reviewed. The date and time for applications received by email will be the date and time specified by the email system currently in use by the Department.
- Within 30 days after receiving a complete application, the Department will issue a Letter of Qualification confirming the applicant is qualified to receive a tax credit. The Letter of Qualification states the maximum amount of tax credits available for the qualified theatrical production activity and the fiscal year from which the credits will be drawn. Applicants who do not meet minimum statutory requirements or submit an incomplete application will be notified that they are not eligible for a tax credit.
- BEFORE the first rehearsal, the Application Addendum must be submitted.
Final Certification Process
- Within 180 days after the completion date established by the applicant and the Department, a Qualified Theatrical Production Entity shall apply for a Tax Credit Certificate and submit the application to the Department (firstname.lastname@example.org) along with ALL required final documentation. This timeline may be extended at the discretion of the Department based on facts and circumstances beyond the control of the qualified theatrical production entity.
- All Theatrical Production entities with total authorized direct costs greater than $250,000, must include a copy of an independent, third-party auditor’s report which meets the following minimum criteria: Guidelines for Agreed Upon Procedures
- NOTE: A draft engagement letter outlining sample sizes and percentages must be approved by the Department within 180 days of the conclusion of the final Theatrical Production. The Department will determine sample sizes and percentages.
- The Department will review the Application for Tax Credit Certificate, all closing documentation, receipts, and the independent auditor’s report for completeness, accuracy, and to confirm the total amount of direct costs. Based on the actual total of direct costs (authorized costs only) as established by the Department’s review, the Department will issue a Tax Credit Certificate to the Theatrical Production entity, which will not exceed the amount of tax credits specified in the original Letter of Qualification.
- Please note that as part of the Application for Tax Credit Certificate, the Theatrical Production entity must certify that there are no amounts owed to any Maryland entity which provided goods or services in connection with the Theatrical Production activity. If amounts are outstanding, the Department will not issue a Tax Credit Certificate. A Tax Credit Certificate will not be issued until the Maryland Office of Commerce receives confirmation that all outstanding amounts have been paid.
CONTACT For more information, please contact:
Robin Bailey, Director of Policy and Program Development
Maryland Department of Commerce
401 E. Pratt St, 14th floor
Baltimore, MD 21202