Event Insurance: The Good, the Bad, and the Medium

Nothing says sexy like talking about insurance right? I know you've been waiting for this post and that you lay awake at night dreaming about insurance, right?

Oh, that's just me?

Now, it's awkward.

But seriously, event insurance is something to consider if your event is large, has many moving parts, involves anything physical (like yoga, athletic activities, etc.), fire (I LOVE those events!), alcohol, water, alcohol near water, and anything else that could be deemed potentially hazardous in our over-litigated society,

(Kidding. But really, insurance is good for a lot of reasons.)

What is Event Insurance?

Just like car insurance, if someone gets hurt or there's damage that happens to their person or property at an event, event insurance covers you within the statutes of a variety of scenarios. Here are just a few that I can think of:

• Your guests scuff the floor of the venue, and the venue is trying to charge you to rebuff the floors/refinish the floors (up to $1,000)

• A guest, who was served alcohol, slips and falls on a wet piece of tile, suing not only the venue, but you, the caterer, and anyone involved.

• A guest uses one of the branded glass mason jars that you custom ordered for your event, only to slice their lip open because the glass was broken.

• A venue won't do business with you because they've been burned in the past and require event insurance.

The good news

Event insurance is relatively easy to buy. If you have business insurance OR home insurance OR pretty much any other type of insurance (except medical, since that's so specialized) you can call your insurance agent (mine's Progressive, but think State Farm, Geico...any insurance company that you know of) and ask them about event insurance.

Also, you don't ALWAYS need to purchase event insurance. If you're hosting a relatively tame workshop and there's no heavy lifting, AND the venue has insurance (you can find this information in your contract), you're likely covered in most scenarios.

The bad news

I would be remiss in my duty as your professional DIY planner if I didn't recommend you buy it for your event (yes, that includes weddings. Hopefully, your friends aren't jerks who sue you, but you never know that if someone's date gets hurt because of the mechanical bull you provided, she's not going to want to take legal action).

The other bad news is that event insurance can cost anywhere from $100 - $500 or more depending on how many "unsafe" elements you have at your event, and what you want to cover.

Typically, insuring for liquor liability (like if someone gets in a car crash on the way home because they were served by the neighborhood kid who offered to bartend and doesn't have a bartending license) is a bit more expensive, as are things like cancellation insurance (if your event can't be held because of extreme weather or a death in the family, etc.).

The medium news

Event insurance is a worst case scenario situation contingency plan. In all my years as a planner, I've only seen my employers have to use it one time, when there was damage to a venue because of some scuffing of the floors. However, that doesn't mean that you shouldn't at least be aware of it and be aware of the risks you're facing without it.

The other medium news is that you may already be covered. If you have business insurance, check with your agent to see if it's listed. If you don't have business insurance and you're thinking about purchasing it AND you're thinking about hosting events as part of your business, ask your insurance agent if there's an insurance that has general event liability insurance.


What questions do you have about event insurance? Pop them in the comments below. It's the SEXIEST TOPIC EVER so I know you're going to have a TON of questions!

Lauren CaselliComment