No matter what type of event you are planning, there are a multitude of details and factors that can affect the outcome. Hiring a qualified event planner with a track record of success can minimize your chances of having things go wrong, but there is always the possibility of something happening that is out of the event plannerís control. This is why it is essential for your event planner to be insured.
There is a variety of insurance types that benefit event planners and, in turn, the host of the event. When you are hiring an event planner, itís important to be familiar with insurance options available to event planners and ask what type of coverage they carry. First, the basics: Every event planner should carry general liability insurance, which protects against property damage and bodily injury claims. Coverage of $1-3 million is preferable, and an additional umbrella policy will cover any gaps in the general liability coverage. The umbrella policy will also cover claims over the dollar amount of the general policy and claims that arenít otherwise covered by the event plannerís other policies.
Although no one likes to think about it, accidents can happen anywhere, at any time, despite the best planning. Because fire damage to an event facility may be the responsibility of the event sponsor, the event planner should request that the sponsoring organization be added to the buildingís fire or all risk insurance policies. If that isnít a viable option, there are contractual arrangements that can be made to hold the event sponsor harmless for damages or injury not caused by negligence. In the case of physical injuries that occur at the event site, medical payment insurance can provide reimbursement of medical expenses. Having a first-aid station is a must at certain types of events, and incidental medical malpractice insurance will protect medical professionals working at the event.
Whatís an event without food and drink? Did you know that host liability or liquor liability insurance is a requirement in certain states when liquor is being served at an event? Your event planner should be familiar with the requirements in your state, and ensure that the event sponsor is protected against claims involving liquor or accidents resulting from intoxication. Even your event food should be protected by products liability insurance, which can protect you from claims such as food poisoning.
There are even more insurance options that may be recommended for certain types of events, whether they involve protecting exhibitorsí property or office equipment used at the event site, covering the non-appearance of an entertainer, or cancellation insurance when an event cannot be held due to adverse circumstances such as fire, weather conditions or a strike.
Of course event planning professionals and their clients want to approach events thinking about the best outcome, rather than disastrous "what if" scenarios. However, protecting the client with thorough insurance coverage should be a key element of every event, and is a routine part of the job for the best event planners.