Royalties for your performances abroad
PRS for Music members can earn royalties from performances of their works at gigs and festivals outside the UK. These are collected by PRS for Music from the royalty collection society that issues music licenses in that country. We do this through reciprocal agreements, which include your live performances.
Providing the event is licensed and the event organiser/promoter/venue pays the local society, PRS for Music will be able to pass any accrued royalties onto the writers and publishers of the songs you have performed.
We ask you to report your overseas live performances to us within two years of the event and encourage you to file your claim as soon after the events as possible. This is to increase the likelihood of payment by that country’s collection society.
As time passes it becomes increasingly difficult for the local society to license and collect royalties for live events. For example, venues may close or promoters go out of business. Reporting a live performance does not guarantee a royalty payment.
Reporting your overseas live event
It’s easy to report your live events to us, just follow these steps:
1. Select territory e.g. overseas
2. Enter artist name
3. Choose your set list
4. Add the gigs/events where the set list was used (date, venue, city, country, promoter details)
5. Submit claim
Supplying the promoter contact details isn’t mandatory but providing them will definitely make your claim easier to process for the local society.
What happens next
1. You receive an email from PRS for Music confirming the details you submitted and your unique claim number
2. PRS for Music sends the information submitted to the relevant royalty collection societies
3. PRS for Music monitors the progress of your claim through to potential payment
You can see all the claims you submitted to us online, using your unique claim number or clicking ‘previous claims’.
Claims - same set list for every performance
If you have used the same set list for every performance, in every country, you need only submit a single claim;
1. Compile your set list – selecting registered works from our online works database.
2. Enter details of each event, indicating each country, city, venue, date, and any promoter details you have.
Claims - different set lists on tour
If you have used different set lists for different events or performances, you must submit multiple claims;
1. Compile your first set list – selecting registered works from our online works database.
2. Enter details of each event where this set list has been used - indicating each country, city, venue, and any promoter details you may have.
3. Make a new claim for each different set list - adding all of the related events details (you can quickly copy a previously submitted set list and add or remove individual works in order to save time).
Saving incomplete claims
If you are out on tour and want to log set list and event details as soon as you have performed, you can start a claim, save the details, and return to the claim at a later date to add more events or submit your claim. The sooner we get your event details, the sooner we can send them off to the overseas societies, so we advise that you submit claims on a regular basis. You can quickly copy a previous set list to create a new claim.
Tunecodes - what are they?
Tunecodes are unique reference numbers that identify a particular musical work.
We need to supply tunecodes for the songs on your set list so the overseas royalty collection society can match the correct musical work to a performance. Please make sure the musical works are registered with us before you make a claim.
Claims – my set list
The My Set List page gives you three ways to find a tunecode;
1. Search for individual works using title and writer search
2. Pick individual works linked to your CAE number by clicking on the My Works button
3. If you’ve made a claim for the same piece of music before, Copy Previous Set List and remove/add individual works to compile a new set list
Register a work
We advise you register the works you wish to claim for beforehand.
However, if you are in the middle of making a claim and want to add a work that has not yet been registered, go to the My Works page and click on the Register/Amend My Music button and follow the instructions. You will have to wait for the work to be updated on our database before you can submit your claim. The system will save your claim details in the interim period. You can also register your works in advance using the normal works registration screens.
Payment times following a claim
Royalties from international performances usually arrive between 9 and 24 months after the claim is submitted, depending on:
- The overseas collection society’s payment schedule
- The venue paying their music license to the local society
- The promoter paying the local society license fee
Reporting a live performance does not guarantee a royalty payment.
Are you playing live in the US?
There are three collection societies in North America - ASCAP, BMI and SESAC. Your royalties will be paid via one of these societies depending on who you choose to administer your rights in the US – please remember to indicate this when you or your publisher register works.
Where are you playing in the US?
ASCAP & BMI monitor and pay out for the top 300 grossing tours in the US (see below).
We welcome setlist and event details for all live performances in the US, however if you think you may fall outside of the top 300 tours, you must report your event details to us in order to qualify for possible payment.
ASCAP – if you earn less than $25,000 a year from ASCAP and are not paid as part of their census of top 300 tours each year, or have not performed in one of their 13 ‘speciality’ venues, you can apply for payment via their annual International Awards scheme. The scheme relates to performances in the preceding year only so meeting their advertised deadline is important.
BMI – if you’re not paid as part of their quarterly census of top 300 tours you can submit event details through their BMI Live scheme. BMI do not make adjustments for past performance periods so meeting the published deadlines is important.
For both societies, register your live performance details with us in time for the published deadlines using our Online Live Reporting process via our website and we will pass these details onto your respective US society.
Please supply the full Venue address and zip code where possible.
ASCAP & BMI also license and distribute for a variety of serious live concerts and recitals in all types of venues. You can submit programme details via the website and we will pass them on to the relevant society.
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Payment of the top 300 tours in the US.
BMI monitor and pay the top 300 grossing tours each quarter, including support acts, as identified by Pollstar.
ASCAP monitor and pay the top 300 grossing tours each year, including support acts, as identified by Pollstar.
They also distribute for events at the following 13 specific venues and include all of the events in the associated tour.
American Airlines Arena - Miami, FL
Beacon Theatre - New York, NY
Hollywood Bowl - Los Angeles, CA
James L. Knight Center - Miami, FL
Madison Square Garden Arena - New York, NY
Miami Arena - Miami, FL
Office Deport Center - Sunrise, FL
Radio City Music Hall - New York, NY
Roberto Clemente Coliseum - San Juan, PR
Staples Center - Los Angeles, CA
The Forum - Inglewood, CA
The Theatre At Madison Square Garden - New York, NY
Universal Amphitheatre - Universal City, CA
Are you playing live in the Asia?
If you are performing live in Asia, it is important to report the event in advance. This will help local societies to licence premises and event organisers. These organisations often find it challenging to license an event after it has taken place.
It is particularly important to report performances in China, India and South-East Asia in advance.
PRS members can use our online form to provide performance information along with a setlist. The PRS International team will then ensure that the local society has all the information they require.
Amounts typically paid out
Unfortunately PRS for Music cannot predict royalty amounts from overseas performances. Several factors influence royalty amounts that return from collection societies in other countries, including:
- ticket price
- live tariff applied by the local society
Band X plays in a venue that holds 1000 people
Tickets are sold at €10 each
900 tickets are then sold
The local live tariff in this country is 8% of the box office receipts
900 tickets sold x €10 = €9000
€9000 x 8% = €720
- The license fee for this gig is €720 which is invoiced to the promoter
- The promoter pays the invoice to the local collection society
- The collection society then makes their administration deductions before accounting to PRS for Music
PRS for Music aims to distribute royalties from major overseas collection societies on set dates in 2011.
View the distribution schedule
Find the period covering your performance in a specific country, then see the bottom of the table for the date we intend to distribute. (Please note that this schedule may be subject to change).
Report your overseas live performances
Find out about our different live performance schemes