Last week I experienced a great shock when the event insurance company that I have been with for 9 years would not renew my policies! After I looked into the reasons and called 20 other insurance companies, I found out that for the last 9 years of business, I was not covered like I thought I was!!! The 20 other companies I called would not insure me either.
I’m writing this to you today to make you aware of what I learned and to refer the company I am now with (if you need insurance).
First, each company told me that my $2m general liability policy DOES NOT cover events! What?!? I was told that their GL policies only cover my event planning services like a consultant…not the event itself. I have NEVER understood this to be the case. Have you? I thought that if someone got hurt on the event site and they named everyone in a lawsuit, I’d be covered by my GL policy. This is not the case for many insurance companies as I found out this week.
Second, each company told me they would not insure me if I signed contracts directly with hotels and vendors. Of course, this is our business model and one I recommend to EVERY planner to ensure control over the budget and event. I was told I would need to change the way I do business or I would NEVER be insured. This is ridiculous! Why wouldn’t insurance companies create a product for businesses like mine (even at a premium) to meet my needs instead of telling me I need to conform to their idea of what event planning should be?
I also asked each company if we could purchase event insurance for each event in addition to our GL and PL policies to make sure the events were covered. They said no. What?!? I know brides can buy this insurance. Why can’t professionals who know what they are doing? Very frustrating.
I searched on and asked a lot of planner friends who they use for insurance. Sadly, many of these companies are not renewing their current clients after this year so finding event insurance is becoming increasingly difficult.
Finally, a friend told me about the company she is insured by…I called them and they offered me EXACTLY what I was looking for…$200 a year cheaper than my original company! I asked all the questions above and they assured me that their GL policies cover the event and my professional liability policy covers me as a planner and that it doesn’t matter if I sign contracts with vendors and venues…AHA!!! Just what I thought.
Read your policies…ask your agents…you may not have the coverage you think. Meanwhile if you want to know the company I purchased from today, they are called Hiscox Insurance. Another planner friend told me he uses Wells Fargo. Check them out. If you have more questions, contact me…I’m happy to share.
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About Forté Events:
Forté Events is a strategic event design and production firm specializing in corporate, non-profit, and social events worldwide. Based in Colorado Springs, CO, and New York City this company produce events worldwide from Fortune 500 clients to families and charities. Forté Events specializes in helping clients attain their goals, realize return on investment, and achieve the most unique, creative experiences.
About Tami Forero:
Tami has set new standards and challenged traditional event ideas throughout her twenty one years as a corporate and independent event producer. Her unique approach to the business of events qualified her as a finalist for the 2006 Event Producer of the Year Spotlight Award and Event Production Company of the Year Spotlight Award in 2008. In 2010, Tami won the Rising Star Award from the Colorado Springs Business Journal and Forté Events won the 2010 ICON Award for the best non-profit event produced in Colorado.