Property damage? It happens. Injuries? That too. Save yourself and your clients a great deal of hassle with the right event insurance.

By now, most wedding and event professionals have heard the buzz regarding event insurance. Sure, you know it exists, but do you really know exactly what event insurance covers, and how it can benefit your clients (and you)? Event insurance is a necessity for event planners looking to keep themselves, and their clients, protected.

There are two different types of event insurance coverage—event liability insurance and event cancellation insurance. Let’s look at both.

Event liability insurance
Event liability protects your client if someone causes property damage to the venue or someone is injured at their event (the host/honoree must be liable). The coverage is typically primary over any other insurance protection, which means if a covered claim occurs at your client’s event, the client’s one-day event liability insurance policy will pay first—before any other insurance policy. Primary liability coverage by event hosts, such as your clients, is preferred by most venues, because it helps minimize the associated risks and exposures of owning a venue. Many require it.

Examples of situations that would be covered under an event liability policy would be damage to a venue’s furnishings, such as couches, mirrors, coffee tables—even toilets and landscaping. The event host would also be protected if someone slips, falls, and gets injured at the event venue due to their negligence. Or, worse yet, the event host would be protected from the ultimate, unfortunate liability claim when an over-served wedding guest is involved in an auto accident on the way home. Again, these situations would be covered only if the damage or injury was the fault of your client; venues should have their own liability coverage to protect from their wrongdoing.

Additional event liability coverage benefits:
• Limits vary by insurance carrier, but bodily injury and property
damage liability limits typically are up to $1 million per occurrence and $2 million total.
• The venue can be named as “additional insured” on the certificate of insurance for no extra cost.
• Host liquor liability is included for free.
• Set-up and tear-down is covered (within 24 hours of the event).
• Protection and peace of mind for a low cost—policies start as
low as $75.

Event cancellation insurance
As an event professional, you’ve seen it all. Photographers go missing the day of the event, gifts get stolen, and hurricanes can ruin a perfectly planned event. Event cancellation insurance is becoming increasingly popular, because it protects the event host if they need to cancel or postpone their special event due to unforeseen circumstances.

Examples of unforeseen circumstances include:
• Extreme weather (hurricanes, tropical storm, even an epic
• Accident or illness of an immediate family member
• Military deployment
• Vendor bankruptcy

Unfortunately, in today’s day and age, it is not uncommon for even the most trusted vendors to unexpectedly go bankrupt and close their doors. Imagine if that happened with a reception venue, photographer, or florist that you referred to your client—your reputation could disappear along with your client’s deposit money. Event cancellation insurance would help reimburse your clients for some of these costs, and could make your life a little easier should the unexpected occur at one of your clients’ events.

Event cancellation insurance also covers additional expenses your client may incur to avoid cancelling their event, and pays for other losses or damages such as:
• Lost wedding rings
• Damage to special attire
• Vendor no-shows
• Lost or damaged photography
• Lost or damaged videography
• Lost or damaged gifts

Avoid headaches with the right insurance
Event professionals are often focused on the planning and execution of a flawless event, yet sometimes situations that no one saw coming arise. By recommending that your clients turn to a short-term event insurance provider for added insurance protection, you could save your client some headaches, and possibly your own reputation. WPM
Amanda Newmeister, Markel Insurance, Waukesha, Wis.