Incentives & Tax Credits


On November 7, 2019, Governor David Ige signed and adopted new Hawaii Administrative Rules (HAR) relating to the Motion Picture, Digital Media, and Film Production Income Tax Credit.  These new Rules, which took effect on November 17, 2019, supersedes the previously issued film credit guidance.

IMPORTANT UPDATE: HRS section 235-17 was amended by ACT 217- GM 1318 (effective Jan 1, 2023) these amendments supersede all previous guidance. See amendments here: ACT 217 GM1318_.PDF (

Previous Tax Information Releases (superseded by newly adopted and amended Hawaii Administrative Rules):


The Hawaii Department of Taxation has issued a new Tax Advisory 2023 (12-23-22.)

Please review the above documents carefully before registering for the tax credit.



This is a refundable tax credit based on a production company’s qualified Hawaii expenditures while producing a qualified film, television, commercial, or digital media project. The credit equals 22% of qualified production costs incurred on Oahu, and 27% on the neighbor islands (Big Island, Kauai, Lanai, Maui, Molokai).

UPDATE: The tax credit rate has increased to 22% on qualified production costs incurred on Oahu, and 27% on the neighbor islands (Big Island, Kauai, Lanai, Maui, Molokai) for filers who register for the tax credit on or after January 1, 2023

Requirements to access the credit as of January 1, 2023:
  • Register to do business in the State of Hawai’i;
  • Register with the Hawaii Film Office/Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism at least seven days PRIOR to the Start (first day) of Principal Photography (SOPP) in Hawai’i;
  • Meet the minimum in-state spending requirement of at least $100,000;
  • Make reasonable efforts to hire local talent and crew Hawaii Film Office | Crew & Talent;
  • Every person making a payment to a loan-out company and claiming a tax credit to deduct and withhold GET in an amount equal to the highest rate of tax plus any applicable county surcharge for all payments made to the loan-out company for services performed in the state;
  • Provide evidence when making any claim for products or services acquired or rendered outside of Hawai’i that reasonable efforts were unsuccessful to secure and use comparable products or services within the state.
  • Requires each taxpayer (filer) claiming the motion picture, digital media, and film production income tax credit to submit a fee in an amount equal to 0.2 % of the tax credit claimed by the qualified production; Such fee will be payable via our online portal HERE.
  • Provide evidence of financial or in-kind contributions or educational or workforce development efforts toward the furtherance of the local film, television and digital media industries that is valued at 0.1% of the productions Hawai’i Spend or $1000, whichever is greater. Evidence to be uploaded to online HPR.

Note: Productions registered after Jan 1, 2023 are no longer required to secure a Verification (AUP) Review, but we do encourage it for filings with over $1M in qualified production costs.

The refundable production tax credit also includes the following:

  • $50 million annual spending ceiling, but ACT 143 also provides that once the $50 million aggregate figure is reached that productions may claim from the subsequent year.
  • $17 million per production credit cap (applies to productions registered in 2023 CY or after);
  • Qualifies certain productions with Internet-only distribution;
  • Allows State and County location and facilities fees as a qualified expenditures;
Qualified Spend: The qualified spend includes all in-state costs incurred by a qualified production that are subject to Hawai’i State General Excise Tax (GET) or Income Tax.
  • Costs incurred for the use of state and county facilities and locations, although not subject to GET, do qualify for the incentive.
  • Insurance premiums from out-of-state insurance companies, fees to obtain a verification review from out-of-state CPA firms (unless registered to do business in the State of Hawai’i) do not qualify.
  • Government imposed fines, penalties, or interest incurred within Hawai’i by the production do not qualify.
  • ALL banking fees, USPS postage expenditures do not qualify.

Overview & Instructions:

Required Forms to be completed here :

  • PRE-PRODUCTION REGISTRATION FORM (PRF) 22-27% TAX CREDIT – Due at least seven days prior to first Hawai’i shoot date.
  • PRE-PRODUCTION REGISTRATION FORM (PRF) SPLIT YEAR 22-27% TAX CREDIT – Due at least seven days prior to first Hawaii shoot date.
  • HAWAII PRODUCTION REPORT (HPR) 22-27% TAX CREDIT –Due no later than 90 days following the end of each calendar year in which qualified production costs were expended.

Required Attachments for the Hawai’i Production Report:

  • Detailed final Hawai’i Expenditure Ledger showing all production expenditures incurred in the State of Hawaii.
  • Signed Sworn Statement identifying qualified production costs incurred during the calendar year.
  • Crew List with names and contact info.
  • Vendor list with total costs associated with each vendor or individual and active General Excise Tax (GET) license numbers for ALL vendors. (See forms below)
  • Loan Out List with total costs associated with each loan out company and active General Excise Tax (GET) license numbers for ALL loan out companies. (For productions registered on or after Jan 1,2023, you will also submit proof of GET withholding payments on behalf of loan outs.)
  • Payroll log (any production employee who is not on payroll and without HI income taxes withheld, must be registered to do business in the state, and have a GET license number).
  • Petty cash log (showing complete breakdown of petty cash payments and petty cash vendors).
  • Verification of Education/Workforce Development Contribution (contribution must be earmarked for digital media or performing arts program in Hawaii public or charter school).
  • End Credit Verification (screen grab) if available. And the Final Product and/or EPK.
  • Use Tax List (if applicable) with total costs associated with each vendor and documentation that use tax was paid (via Forms G-45/49.)  (See forms below).
  • Signed Use Tax Sworn Statement demonstrating that reasonable efforts were made to use comparable products or services within Hawaii before items were imported into the State.
  • Verification Review of your HPR and claim, for this tax credit, conducted by a Qualified CPA using agreed upon procedures prescribed by DBEDT.  (This does not apply to productions registered on or after Jan 1, 2023.)

Expenditure Report Templates:

These templates provide an example of the level of detail required on the Hawaii expenditure reports (aka Expense Ledger) you need to submit with your Hawai’i Production Report (HPR.) You may use your own expenditure report formats as long as the detail provided is equivalent to the detail found in these templates. All cost items must be associated with a specific vendor or individual’s name and include a General Excise Tax (GET) License number.

Please use the Vendor List Template below. Total costs paid to each vendor or individual must be included in required Vendor List form. Vendor List must account for all In-State vendors (tab 1) and any Out-of-State vendors (tab 2) with their active GET license numbers.

Please use the Use Tax (Imported Goods) List Template below. List must account for any qualified out-of-state vendors that provided imported goods or services (for which Use Tax must be paid.)

Please note the multiple worksheets on different tabs in each document.


Royalties derived from performing arts products are excluded from a Hawai’i taxpayer’s income and not subject to state income tax.

For further information, contact:

Phone: 808-492-6233 or   [email protected]

Phone: 808-587-1530  or  [email protected]