FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Q: I'M LOOKING FOR A TALENT MANAGER. CAN THE TMA REPRESENT ME?
A: The organization itself does not represent actors and does not help match actors to representation. We do not field requests for representation.
Q: WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN AN AGENT AND A TALENT MANAGER?
A: The primary responsibilities of an agent are to procure employment and negotiate contracts, and they are licensed and bonded by their states and franchised by the unions in order to do so.
Talent Managers handle the day-to-day of an actor's operations, working closely with their team to advise on opportunities, overall development, career strategy, branding, marketing, and the fulfillment of promised deliverables. Talent Managers handle a wide variety of responsibilities for their clients, often focusing on a targeted roster and adapting their evolving roles as the actor's career grows.
There is currently no formal state licensing available to talent managers; they are not permitted to be licensed or bonded as a talent or employment agency and are not franchised by the unions. However, they are permitted to hold business licenses, certificates and/or company filings in the county in which their office(s) conduct(s) business, can hold a Child Performer Services permit in the State of California when working with clients under the age of eighteen (18) which requires a thorough background check and fingerprinting, and can voluntarily join trade organizations like the Talent Managers Association in an effort to commit to and help promote ethical business practices within the profession as outlined by our Code of Ethics. The vetting and Membership policies of the TMA are currently the strongest regulations upheld in the industry as pertaining to personal managers.
Q: WHAT DOES IT MEAN IF A TALENT MANAGER IS A MEMBER OF THE TMA?
A: It means that they have gone through a thorough vetting process conducted by their peers, and upon acceptance have agreed to abide by the TMA's Code of Ethics.
Q: HOW DO I FIND OUT IF MY MANAGER IS A MEMBER OF THE TMA?
A: All active TMA Members in good standing are listed on our website under Current Members (they may also be listed under Honorary Members). Membership is on an individual basis, so please click on the company's page to confirm if your manager is registered. If they are not listed by name, that means that manager is not currently a Member of the TMA.
Q: I'M A MANAGER. HOW DO I JOIN THE TMA?
A: Our Membership is currently closed to new Members while we update our application and vetting processes. Please check back in 2022 for more information regarding our Membership Requirements.
Q: I DON'T QUALIFY FOR MEMBERSHIP. DO YOU OFFER TRAINING IF I WANT TO GET STARTED IN THE ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRY?
A: We are a trade organization and do not offer a training program; however, many agencies, management companies and production companies do hire entry level positions on an as-needed basis. We do not maintain a list of these offices or any available positions.
Q: MY TALENT MANAGER IS NOT A MEMBER OF THE TMA BUT I WOULD LIKE TO FILE A GRIEVANCE AGAINST THEM. CAN I DO THAT?
A: The TMA can only investigate grievance claims against current TMA Members, and only when filed by a current TMA Member in good standing. If you feel you are in personal danger or are the victim of a crime, please contact the proper authorities.
Q: A TALENT MANAGER RECENTLY SENT ME A CONTRACT. CAN SOMEONE AT YOUR ORGANIZATION ADVISE ME?
A: The TMA does not give legal advice. Please contact an Entertainment Attorney for assistance.
Q: A TALENT MANAGER WANTS TO SIGN ME, BUT INSISTS I TAKE A MANDATORY SEMINAR UP FRONT BEFORE THEY'LL ADD ME TO THEIR ROSTER. CAN THEY DO THAT?
A: TMA Members are not permitted to charge a client any upfront fees in exchange for representation, as outlined in our organizations Code of Ethics. We are unable to monitor or speak to the operations of Managers who are not Members of the TMA.
THE TALENT MANAGERS ASSOCIATION IS A TRADE ORGANIZATION THAT OPERATES STRICTLY IN SERVICE TO ITS MEMBERSHIP
WE DO NO ACCEPT OR RESPOND TO TALENT SUBMISSIONS, AUTOGRAPH REQUESTS OR SCREENPLAY QUERIES
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Past Presidents attending the 50th Anniversary TMA Cocktail Reception at the Hollywood Entertainment Museum in Los Angeles in 2005.
Pictured from Left to Right: Steven Nash, Paul Bennett, Michael Cushman, Tami Lynn, Howard Wolf, David Martin and first COPM president William Loeb.