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Special Event Insurance

We offer flexible payment plans to fit any budget needs.

We offer flexible payment plans to fit any budget needs.

We've helped over 60,000 customers buy more affordable insurance coverage.

We've helped over 60,000 customers buy more affordable insurance coverage.

We shop your coverage with up to 35 national carriers.

We shop your coverage with up to 35 national carriers.

We shop your personal insurance to save you time and money.

What is Special Event Insurance?

Special event insurance is short-term general liability insurance that protects an event holder, such as a vendor or concessionaire, against lawsuits arising by third-parties for bodily injury or property damage. Additional coverages such as liquor liability, medical costs and even rain-date coverage are available. There are often some eligibility standards for the size, length and location of the event.

A business owner of an art gallery decides to rent to a non-profit who will host their annual benefit both in the gallery and on the patio. There will be a caterer with liquor and hor d’oeuvres, a silent auction and some merchandise sales, as well as some volunteers who will be working the benefit. Attendance is expected to be about 500 people.

The business owner likely has general liability insurance for his art gallery, however, when renting out his space for an event he will need extra coverage and will require the non-profit to provide special event insurance as well. Some business owners even require you to add their name to additional insureds on the special event policy. Unfortunately, you have to do whatever your event venue management wishes. Fortunately, special event coverage is not very expensive and adding insureds or extra coverages doesn’t usually break the bank. Most basic special event policies cover liabilities first, such as third-party bodily injury or property damage and liquor liability. Even if the non-profit checked their caterer’s certificate of insurance, it is still a good idea to have liquor liability coverage in their policy as well. It doesn’t cost much to add and will likely provide more coverage to them than a subcontractor’s policy (the caterer). There are other coverages this non-profit may need for their event. For example, they plan on spending part of their benefit outdoors. If weather keeps guests from attending the fundraiser that day, the benefit will not serve its purpose to raise funds. A rain-date endorsement will cover your losses for having to change the date of your event due to weather. Or an event cancellation endorsement, in the circumstance they wish to cancel the event and recoup their expenses. Also, with very expensive items in their silent auction, the non-profit may consider increasing their limits with an umbrella or excess liability endorsement.

As demonstrated, even a one time, one night only, event can need a significant amount of coverage. Imagine a multi-day event? Or an event that involves children? Maybe you are parking cars at your event, but not with a valet service? What if you are bringing tools and equipment from your home or business, that don’t normally leave the premises, to the venue? Well, The Insurance Shop has thought of all these questions and more. Our special event specialists work with customers to define their risks and find their coverages fast and for the right price. We’ve got lots of reasons for you to call, but here are just a few extra

  • Large excess limits available.
  • Abuse and molestation coverage available.
  • Commercial property, inland marine and hired and non-owned auto coverages available.
  • Available nationwide.
  • Available for short-term or annual events.
  • Separate tenant user liability policy for exhibitors or vendors available.
Find your lowest insurance rates.

Find your lowest
special event rates

We will help you identify all the risks at your event, then get to work getting you covered. No need to lose deposits or your mind when events don't go as planned.

  • Best liquor and general liability coverage for your events.
  • Licensed throughout the U.S. and the District of Columbia.
  • We insure organizations, businesses and private parties.
Compare quotes from over 35 carriers.

Compare quotes
from over 35 carriers

Once we've got your best quotes back from our carriers, we take the time to help you understand your options and take the next steps to get you covered quickly.

  • Easy claim reporting and change requests.
  • Discounts available through many carriers.
  • We continue to follow up after binding; our service to you never ends.

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Special Event Insurance
We shop your insurance to save you time and money.

Why do I need Special Event Insurance?

Imagine you’re throwing a small party in your home; only half of your invited guests attend and the food you ordered came late; that’s a disaster, right? How much time and money did you lose? Now, what if you were throwing a party for 500 people who were paying admission and only 250 showed up? What if your guests hated the catered food and instead gathered at the open bar, leading to intoxicated guests? How much time and money have you lost in this scenario? And that’s before you get notice of any lawsuits over people falling down and getting hurt or driving while intoxicated and blaming your event.

Aside from the fact that the majority of vendors will require some type of liability insurance for your event to take place on their premises, having event insurance can save your event from being a real disaster.

What does Special Event Insurance Cost?

Most events can get coverage for under or around $400. There are a number of factors that will both increase and decrease this number:

  • Event gross revenue.
  • Type of organization (or private party) hosting event.
  • Years in operation (if being hosted by an organization or business).
  • Years of experience of the current owner (if being hosted by an organization or business).
  • Prior claims (going back four years usually).
  • Number of attendees (per day and per event).
  • Number of volunteers.
  • Admission fees, liquor sales, food sales and merchandise sales.
  • Security at the venue.
  • First aid at the venue.
  • Entertainment at the venue, such as amusement rides, animal rides or fireworks.

The best first step is to contact The Insurance Shop. We will set you up with a personal shopping assistant (aka an insurance agent) who will learn all the details of your event from top to bottom to help you determine your exposures. Your agent will help you prioritize coverages and determine how much you need and want before shopping all of our carriers for the best rate.

What are Common Special Event Claims?

If you are looking for how to file a claim, please visit our Client Services.

Very commonly events are canceled or postponed due to inclement weather. Even if your event is being held indoors you may need rain-date coverage. In the event a road or venue becomes flooded or any other uncontrollable consequence of weather, your event may be canceled or postponed. Note that not all weather event are covered by rain-date coverage. Your agent at The Insurance Shop will always assure you know what is and is not covered.

Also, very common, venues fall through! Whether the venue was booked prior to a remodel and the remodel wasn’t completed on time or the venue had a power failure and all the food and ice melted the night before your event, you’ll be glad you were covered with rain-date and/or cancellation coverage.

The most common claims filed for special events are from third-parties. Slip and falls, stolen property and damaged property make up the majority of these claims. If someone steals your hired photographer’s camera and case, along with all your event photos, you will be responsible to your photographer. If one of your attendees decides to move a heavy chair and creates marks on the floor, you will be responsible to the owner of the property. Having photographs/video coverage and liability coverage will cover both of these scenarios.

How Can I Reduce My Risk?

Reducing your liability risk at your special event can be challenging or very simple, based on your venue and the demographic of attendees. Here are some general tips to think about when writing a safety plan for your event:

  • Write a safety plan! No matter how small your event, having a written policy for you, anyone working or volunteering, subcontractors and even for attendees will reduce your risks and may even decrease your premium, if given to the insurance agent.
  • Outline policies and procedures your event will follow. Make detailed procedures for any scenario that could be relevant to your event. For example, what to do if an attendee gets injured, how to recognize an intoxicated attendee and what to do if there is a lost child. You should also write out policies you want everyone to follow, such as when to stop serving alcohol to attendees showing signs of intoxication or steps to follow when there is a spill (wet floor signs can save you money!).
  • Think about demographics. Who is attending? Will there be alcohol and people under 21 years of age present? Will there be small children? Seniors? Each demographic has special needs, small children tend to run away or grab things that are not attached, for example.
  • Plan out alternative routes, dates and venues. You never know what may happen in regards to roads, weather or local news that could have you scrambling to find a new venue or tell all 1,000 guests that the event is rescheduled. Having this information all figured out ahead of time, even printing a rain date and time on the invitation if you think it is likely, will save a lot of time and effort. Also, make sure you have a way to communicate with your attendees. Whether you have a list of names or a following on social media, make sure they know where you will post updates to your event, so you don’t have to contact people individually.
  • Post publicly where appropriate. Wherever possible post warning signs and policies for attendees. If there is an entrance that is staying wet from traffic, put a wet floor sign. If there is a petting zoo for children, post clear rules for how they are allowed to interact with animals. If there are expensive furnishings in your venue, it may be appropriate to indicate permitted food and drink areas.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. I’ve heard this called a few things, is one way correct?
  2. Event liability insurance, commercial general liability coverage, special event liability coverage or short-term liability coverage are all correct terms that can be used interchangeably.

  3. What about the workers at my event? Volunteer or paid?
  4. Special event insurance will only ever cover third-parties and the insured. If you are have paid employees or volunteers just for your event you will need to purchase workers compensation insurance.

  5. What if someone from my event makes a claim the next day after the event has ended?
  6. Depending on the carrier, there can be 24 to 48 hours added as padding to the event date to include incidents occurring during set-up and break-down, as well as to accommodate any delayed-report claims. Make sure you understand the terms of your policy before binding, you may be able to add more padding to your event.

Insurance Services

Our Special Products and Services Make Us Better

Whether you are looking for the best coverage or to save more money over your current policy, our fast and friendly service staff is always here to help. As we work with numerous carriers across the United States we can offer more products at the best competitive rates. We at The Insurance Shop don't stop there, we also have a highly trained and experienced customer service team who guide and support you both before and after you've obtained your coverage.

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