Updated May 1, 2021
More and more, we are hearing about wedding venues requiring marriage officiants to carry professional liability insurance. “Whaaa? Me? I’m just in-and-out. Barely there,” say some. “What could go wrong?” they ask. Well, really, any number of things could happen. It is wise to be protected. In light of this, following are some insurance basics.
First, read through the background information we’ve prepared. JPus is doing the legwork, gathering particulars and checking out insurance providers. Our plan is to give members some more information to help you make the best decision for your circumstances and needs. Please complete our short poll, too, to inform our research. Soon we’ll provide follow-up information.
Professional Liability Insurance
Oops! Professional liability insurance includes claims against you for errors or omissions. If your mistake or negligence leads to damages, injury or legal costs, you’ll be covered.
General Liability Insurance
This is usually for a business, but also for individuals who provide face-to-face services. Specifically, it gives coverage for an accident with property damage or bodily injury. This type of insurance is particularly valuable if you perform ceremonies at your home. From your perspective you are being generous. You are sharing your beautiful lakeside view. Or, the lovely stone fireplace as a backdrop. It is all well and good – until someone slips and falls. Because inviting the couple into your home is part of a business, these events may or may not be covered on your homeowner’s policy. Do your homework. General liability insurance also covers other locations.
- If you have a sound system, camera or other equipment that you use for your ceremonies, consider insuring these items as part of your policy.
One-Day Event Insurance
- Instead of purchasing an annual policy, an alternative is insurance by the event. This is ideal if you only do a small number of ceremonies each year and don’t have clients come to your home or office.
Having an umbrella policy extends your existing insurance coverage, and may cover additional household members and activities that take place outside of your home. Check with your insurance provider to determine if a separate business umbrella policy is needed.
Following this article’s publication, JPus polled its members to better understand what insurance needs there are. The results of the poll follow:
- See Part 2 of our insurance series, Liability Insurance – Options
- See JPus’ other professional development articles.
- If getting paid is a problem, this article has tips on collecting payment.
- This topic was inspired by our members. Chat with fellow officiants in our private JPus Members only Facebook Group.