Planning a wedding is a lot of work. There are countless decisions that need to be made. The floral arrangements, flavor of the cake, music to be played, seating charts, meal options and many more. It’s stressful. One thing you might not think about during the planning phase is insurance.
Do I need insurance for my wedding?
If something happens at your wedding, you hope your guests won’t sue you, but you never know. Also, it doesn’t have to be a guest that could sue you. What if a passerby is somehow injured? Remember that story a few years back where a wedding guest threw a chair off a balcony and it fell on an innocent passerby on the sidewalk below? Anything could happen and you need to be prepared.
Doesn’t the wedding venue have insurance?
Yes, or at least they should have insurance but their insurance probably only protects them if they get sued. If someone slips on the tile floor in the bathroom or gets burned when a waiter drops a lit sterno on them, they might sue the wedding venue. They could sue you too but those are likely liabilities that the venue would be responsible for.
What happens if you’re responsible?
There are cases where the venue is not responsible and therefore their insurance won’t pay. What happens if you’re posing for photos and someone trips over the train on your wedding dress, falls down and sustains a significant injury? Anything could happen and you should be prepared.
Does my Homeowners Insurance cover my wedding?
Your Homeowners Insurance will likely provide coverage for many things that could happen at your wedding. You’ll want to check your policy to determine if you have enough liability coverage on your Homeowners Insurance policy, keeping in mind that a lot more can go wrong at a wedding with 200 people in attendance than at your backyard barbecue where you have 20 people in attendance.
Who’s serving the alcohol?
Many incidents at weddings that result in lawsuits have something to do with alcohol. If the venue or a caterer is dispensing the alcohol, make sure they have liquor liability insurance. If you’re providing the alcohol and you’re dispensing it or it’s self-serve, you have more exposure. If you’re relying on the coverage provided by your Homeowners Insurance, you’ll want to consult with your insurance professional to see if your policy would provide liability coverage if you’re dispensing the alcohol.
Purchasing a Wedding Insurance Policy
A Wedding Insurance policy is an Event Insurance policy specifically for weddings. These types of policies usually provide coverage for the wedding ceremony, wedding reception, and the wedding rehearsal as long as all three events occur within a 48 hour period. Wedding Insurance policies have many liability coverage options available and I find that most people purchase a $1,000,000 coverage amount. You should work with an insurance professional to help determine the appropriate coverage amount for your specific situation. There is also the option to add liquor liability coverage and Additional Insureds. Wedding venue’s will commonly ask to be listed as an Additional Insured on your insurance which means that your insurance will also cover the venue if they’re sued.
There are many reasons why people consider purchasing a Wedding Insurance policy:
- They don’t think they have enough liability coverage from their Homeowners Insurance policy.
- The venue is requesting to be listed as an Additional Insured.
- They’re providing and dispensing alcohol to wedding guests.
- They want peace of mind knowing that they have a specific policy in place in case anything happens.
How much does Wedding Insurance cost?
Every situation is different but, from my experience, a typical 48 hour Wedding Insurance policy with a $1,000,000 coverage amount and liquor liability will run you roughly $175.
For more information on insurance for your wedding, please contact us or stop by our Clifton Park, NY office.
John Lofrumento, CFP®, FSCP®, RICP®
President, The Lofrumento Agency
Clifton Park, NY / Ballston Lake, NY