Who do you use? - Professional Insurance for you Wedding Photography Videography

Discussion in 'Presentation & Marketing' started by haring, Oct 11, 2018.

  1. haring

    haring Member
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    Who do you use? Which insurance company do you use for you wedding photography and / or videography business?

    I am looking for General Liability.

    What is the average yearly premium range in $?


    Thanks!
     
  2. jim10219

    jim10219 Member
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    The average yearly premium will depend on a whole bunch of different factors. The state you live in, the size of your company. The amount of insurance you need. What you want it to cover.

    In Oklahoma, it's probably not even worth doing if you're just a wedding photographer. Most wedding photographers don't have a storefront so things like slip and falls aren't really a concern. And while a client may decide to sue you for bad or lost photos, good practice should mitigate that. Plus in Oklahoma, they can't take your house and the courts are heavily biased towards businesses, so you typically wouldn't lose a suit against a client anyway. So that the most you generally risk at any one wedding is the fee they're paying you.
     
  3. OP
    OP
    haring

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    Thanks so much! Very good info! I am located in Florida. I may be a little different.
     
  4. MattKing

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    Are you a member of a professional photographer's association? They are often great sources for this sort of information, and often have "preferred" provider tie-ins that can be advantageous.
     
  5. Michael Firstlight

    Michael Firstlight Subscriber
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    I was a member of PPA for years, and got insurance that way (liability and equipment). I need to re-join PPA, it wasn't expensive, but essential when I was doing work for hire.

    MFL
     
  6. jim10219

    jim10219 Member
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    I'd talk to some other local wedding photographers and see what they think. A club or PPA would be a good way to meet them and ask questions without coming across as trying to steal away their business.
     
  7. JBrunner

    JBrunner Moderator Staff Member Moderator
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    First and foremost, limit your liability as far as product and service issues with a CONTRACT. That is an industry standard practice.

    On to General Liability (injury and/or damage):

    Most major insurance companies offer liability policies for a business. A policy won't run more than a few hundred bucks a year. There are many very compelling reasons to have liability insurance when operating a business. In my opinion, I would consider the advice not to carry a policy if you are in business to be somewhat marginal. For starters, there is no way you can predict what can happen. I have witnessed countless mishaps over my 35 years in business, large and small, including things that wound up in court or as an insurance claim, and in todays litigious society a business owner is a prime target for litigation over the flimsiest of circumstance. You can end up paying cold hard currency for a very long or time if things don't go your way, house or not. If someone comes after you, the only thing that you can count on for sure is a huge mess, so leave the predictions of other things to the armchair Perry Masons, and cover your butt.

    If you have insurance, the company lawyers will go to bat on your behalf if they feel they can save money over paying a claim, and if they don't, they will simply pay the claim (which is what usually happens and normally your only inconvenience is a short telephone interview). From front seat experience I can tell you when you wind up in court, even if you win, you still lose. All a win does is bring relief from a year or maybe even years of time wasting hair pulling BS. Time you will never get back.

    Also, many times a judge will not award monies past what a reasonable policy will pay, unless there has been malice or gross negligence. However there are some judges who consider lack of liability insurance to be negligent, and mete out punitive judgements accordingly. This is a general observation, again, nothing is for sure in litigation.

    Also, many venues want to see proof of insurance before you can shoot there. In my opinion, if you are really a professional and really in business, working for people who pay you to be there, it is part and parcel of an honest business practice, and most clients assume you are an above board business person and so are insured.

    In regards to the OP, general liability is purchased in million dollar increments. I have had liability through American Family, price was in the $200-$300 range for general liability of 1mil. Currently I carry 2mil (standard for commercial work in parks) through State Farm, annual policy is about $425. Peanuts if you are for real. Just open the phone book (yikes! There's a dated statement!) and start calling around and you'll get the gist of it quickly. Agents expect to be questioned and shopped, that's what they are there for, so don't be shy.

    YMMV but thats my 2 cents FWIW.
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2018 at 10:56 PM
  8. mgb74

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    I'll add my 1 cent to JBrunner's 2 cents.

    There's a secondary benefit to insurance in that it helps protect you from nuisance lawsuits. If you're insured, someone trying to sue you has to deal with a legal savvy insurance company that has attorneys on staff. As opposed to you, who has to hire an attorney and, far more often than not, will not recover that cost (at least in the US) even if you "win".
     
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