Matt Hands, VP, Insurance and MoneySense
You've got enough on your plate when planning an event like a wedding, conference, or anywhere a crowd gathers. But, accidents happen, and unforeseen issues can arise. To ensure you're protected from loss of income due to bodily injury or property damage done to the event space, there's event liability insurance.
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It's a form of liability insurance available, recommended, and sometimes even mandatory when hosting an event for your small business or hosting a large group of family and friends. The event host will purchase an event insurance policy to cover their liability primarily for the following reasons: in case of accidental injury of a guest or property damage occurs to the event amenities/space.
Event insurance provides the following:
- Event liability provides coverage between $1,000,000–$5,000,000 should a claim be made against you for bodily injury or property damage.
- Tenants liability (or commercial general liability) up to $1,000,000 in case of damage to the event space.
Additional coverages to ask your broker about:
- Host liquor liability is an optional add-on. You'll need a liquor permit to serve alcoholic beverages at your event before you can access this coverage. If you're serving liquor at your event, you need this coverage to activate the event and tenant's liability coverage.
- Event cancellation insurance is often included as part of your special event insurance package. To be sure, ask for it if you're worried about inclement weather or a worker strike at your venue of choice.
- Medical payments cover the cost of any bodily injuries that might occur at your event. Be sure to ask your provider if it’s included in the event liability insurance or if you need to add it to your package.
How much does event insurance cost?
You can buy cheap event liability insurance for as low as $175 for a one-day event, like a wedding, with less than 250 people. An event that lasts between 2–10 days (e.g. a conference or convention) increases the price, but only slightly to an average of $250. However, many factors will influence your cost.
The type of event you're hosting
A sporting event is different from a speaking engagement, and a policy's price will reflect it.
Critical event details like the date, location, and length
In winter, risk increases due to ice, and if you’re hosting a summer event near water, expect to pay more. If it’s a private event in your house, it’s likely less than a public event.
How many people attend the event
Event liability insurance quotes are done in tiers for guests, they include 1-250, 251-500, 1,001-1,500, 1,501-2,000. If you need more than 2,000, we’ll connect you with an insurance broker to walk you through those steps.
If alcohol is served
If you are serving alcohol, prepare to pay a little more because it's an addition to a standard contract for liquor liability coverage due to the risk increases.
Most venues want a minimum of 1,000,000 in liability insurance. Depending on the number of guests and location, it can be easily increased and won't cost much more.
Most event types, single day or multi-day, will be covered by an event insurer. You will be able to find coverage for a wide range of social and sporting events, such as:
- Weddings or “Stag & Does”
- Family reunions or picnics
- Conventions, job fairs or award presentations
- Partys or receptions
- Shows, festivals, or recitals
- Charity or non-profit events
- Lectures, workshops, or meetings
- Sporting or gaming events and tournaments
If an accident occurs at your event, it’s recommended that you call your event insurance provider right away (ideally within hours of the event).
Your provider will want to know several key event & policyholder details:
- Your name
- Contact information
- Business name (if applicable)
- Event insurance policy number
- Type of coverage
- A description of the claim or accident
Take photographs, write notes, save emails – this information is incredibly valuable to you and your provider to help settle the claim.
When do I need to purchase event insurance?
How to get a certificate of insurance for an event?
Should I require my event vendors to have insurance?
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Matt Hands, Business Director of Insurance
With 6+ years of experience at Ratehub.ca, Matt’s focus has been on growing its newest business unit, Insurance. He is a thought leader and a valuable resource to respected publications across Canada. read full bio
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