As a wedding planner, it’s your job to expect the unexpected. You are putting on large-scale events where accidents are bound to happen. You’re the one in charge, directing traffic and running the show on the wedding day. You make sure everything goes according to plan and you’re the one people turn to when something is amiss. You’re a pro at being prepared, so you have probably already thought about wedding planner insurance, right?
Well, if that’s one of the bases you haven’t covered yet, now’s the time to cover it. Without wedding planner liability insurance, you put your business in jeopardy every time you work an event, and every other regular day. Like we already mentioned, accidents happen (yes, even when you’re in charge), but you can go about your business with confidence by investing in wedding planner insurance. You won’t be sorry you did.
Wedding planner insurance is a protection policy to safeguard you and your business against anything that can go wrong at the wedding, or as you conduct your regular business operations. Insurance policies for wedding planners vary, but tend to fall into one of two categories: general liability insurance and business owner’s insurance. You may need just one, or both, and you can usually tailor a plan or tack on additional policies to suit your specific needs.
What a wedding planner insurance policy covers depends on who is providing it and the custom options they offer, but here are a few things you should include in your policy:
Injury coverage is essential. If anyone is injured on the wedding day, you could be held liable. If that seems far out, consider trivial trips or slips that can escalate to larger bodily injury eg. someone trips over a cord you placed to connect the music, or a dance floor you just wiped down causes someone to slip and fall. A wedding guest could easily choke on the hors d'oeuvres, or the chair they’re sitting on could break. Even if you aren’t personally at fault, you could be named in a lawsuit and held liable. Legal fees alone could cost upwards of $50,000, and that’s not including any payouts to the injured party or medical expenses due.
Your insurance liability policy will also protect you from any property damages that occur at the event. What if a candle sets fire to the curtains, or a glass of wine splashes on a valuable piece of art? A liability policy will cover the costs of repairs and any damages you have to pay out up to the limit of the insurance coverage you have obtained.
If a product or service of your business injures a person or property, this clause in your insurance policy will have you covered. This protects you in the event that your client says the service you already completed caused harm or other damage.
If you or your employees operate a vehicle for business purposes, you should make sure your plan offers some sort of commercial auto insurance. This feature can protect you against any potential vehicle-related accidents or incidents that happen when using the car for work.
If you have a business owner’s policy, your policy will not only cover general liability, as we listed above, but also property insurance. If you have an office space, this is an important addition, but it can also be beneficial if you work from home. A business owner’s policy can protect you in the event something goes wrong at your place of work, such as flooding or fire, by covering any costs associated with the damage. This feature will also cover equipment and data, such as phones, computers, tablets, and files, in case of loss or damage.
If you carry around your equipment to client-meetings, venues, and wedding vendor visits, you may also want to add-on inland marine insurance. This policy provides property coverage while you are in transit, eg. if your computer is stolen out of your car or your tablet gets lost at the wedding venue.
What if your client claims you didn’t fulfill your services as contractually obligated, or claims you caused harm? You’ll want your policy to cover a potentially painful legal battle to defend your work and your wedding planning business. This is where professional liability insurance, or “errors and omissions” insurance comes in. It will not only protect you against claims of negligence, but also from any actual mistakes—hey, we all make them.
As a business owner, you’re legally obligated by the state to cover any medical expenses and pay for employees who are hurt on the job. If you have a team of people you work with, you need insurance that includes worker’s compensation, in case any of your employees are chasing down a bride’s train and break an arm, or pull a muscle carrying heavy equipment.
The cost of wedding planner insurance can vary based on the level of coverage you need. For example, a general liability policy will be far less expensive than a business owner’s policy, but it won’t cover the entire scope of options we outlined above, some of which may be essential to your business. If you’re a sole-proprietor and serve mainly as a day-of-coordinator, you may only need general liability coverage on an event-by-event basis. For a general liability insurance policy, your premiums could be as low as $75 per event or between $300 and $1,000 a year. If you’re just starting out, you don’t have a huge budget to work with, and you only need short-term or monthly coverage, this could be the better option for you.
However, if you have a number of employees, an office space, or expect your wedding planning business to grow in one or both of these ways, you should consider a business owner’s insurance policy. If you fall into this category, your policy could be a few thousand dollars a year, but it’s a necessary expense.
Since you may be forking over a few grand for an insurance policy, it’s important to do your due diligence and research thoroughly before you buy. Compare providers, plans, and coverage limits. Once you’ve narrowed down your search, get a quote from each of your top choices to compare pricing. Every wedding planner’s business is different, so make sure that the plan you choose offers the wedding insurance coverage you need now and as your business grows.
Once you have decided on the plan and policies that are right for you, don’t put it off. You would hate for an unfortunate accident to force all your hard-earned work down the drain, so find the right plan for you and apply today. Here’s why you need wedding planner insurance stat:
Lawsuits and damages that result from them can be incredibly costly. Costly enough to put you out of business. You can be sued for an amount of money that forces you to file for bankruptcy, which, in any case, would be devastating. A wedding business insurance policy will protect your business from such lawsuits. Even if this seems unlikely, the additional cost now, to ensure your safety and security in case the worst should occur, is well worth it.
Having insurance separates the professionals from the beginners. Anyone who owns a legitimate business knows that they need to protect themselves and their assets against potential lawsuits. Insurance gives you clout and shows that you know what you’re doing.
Mistakes, accidents, and slip-ups happen—that’s life. But, they can cause far more stress than necessary if you don’t have insurance. The peace-of-mind that comes with a wedding planner insurance policy is reason enough, we think, to secure it.
Wedding planners are just one of the vendors who should be insured. In fact, every last vendor working the wedding day should have liability insurance. You, as the planner, can help your couple’s chosen vendors secure special event coverage, or, better yet, suggest they only work with vendors who already have it. This will save everyone a big headache in the event that something goes wrong, or when the venue asks for proof.
We know your to-do list is long and chock-full of important things, but move securing wedding planner insurance to the tippy top. It will protect you and your business against the worst of the unexpected. There are a million moving parts on any given wedding day, and any number of accidents could happen. Make sure you’re prepared in case they do (knock on wood).