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Liability Insurance

I'm a part-time photographer, and recently got hired for a corporate event. I send out my usual contract, and the client comes back with a couple of small changes, and one big one: "DB Event Photography maintains liability insurance in the amount of $4 million.  A certificate can be provided upon request."

I have never considered this, have never looked into it, have never been asked about it. Seems like a huge amount. I'm not even sure what it would cover.

Do any of you part-time photographers carry liability insurance? If you do, how much and what does it cover?

For that matter, do any of you full-time photographers carry liability insurance?

Thanks - Dave


  • TrevTrev Moderator
    Yes, I do Dave, $10million cover, $900 per year (Australia) and it covers any damage, accidentally caused by me to anything/person on any event.

  • Trev - Thanks. I was surprised to be asked. You are a full-time photographer, correct?

  • TrevTrev Moderator
    Yes, I am.

    There is a place in town here twice a year they hold a bridal show which I attend and for me to exhibit I must have proof of insurance for public liability, etc. etc. The insurance also does cover some aspects of equipment loss but under certain circumstances only, as it's mainly insurance for public/private damage I may cause, accidentally only of course.

  • So now the question - is it worth it for me, as a part-time photographer, to get a policy? When I say "part-time", what I'm aiming for is 2-3 gigs a month, and I lean more towards corporate events. I guess I will have to think about it this job doesn't pan out because of it, and/or I get asked for insurance from someone else. I've quickly looked at some numbers after an internet search, and the lowest I've seen is $185 for the year at 1 million insurance.

  • TrevTrev Moderator
    Quote 2 is what I am on. $5,000,000 public liability + $10,000 for portable items (camera gear) I travel with.


  • Really not as bad as my wife and I thought.

  • StephenStephen Member
    edited October 2016
    dbruno, if you are going to be accepting gigs for photography at corporate events, you really have no choice but to get liability insurance.  Otherwise, the corporate clients will not deal with you if you do not have the required insurance.  As a hobbyist photographer, I've run into this even if wanted to rent a venue.  If you're doing any photography, for fun or profit, the venue wants you to have the coverage.

    Also, Trev is in Australia, so pricing there may be different than in other countries.  I do know that there are insurance carriers that cater specifically to photographers.  You won't get a good price or coverage if you try to go through the company that has your homeowner's/renter's insurance policy for example.  You'll simply have to adjust your rates to help pay for the the policy.

    I do not have photography insurance, nor do I have any financial stake in this company, but I have read about this insurance carrier from other photography web sites. (for the U.S.)

  • Yep, I am part time and covered for about £2m. I also have professional indemnity so I am covered if I screw up. Being part time is something on the photographer's point of view only - to the customer, you are a supplier of a service. Part time or full time, doesn't matter - you need the same cover.
  • Mr Logic - You raise a good point, about the "photographer's point of view". Thanks for that.
  • Neil vNNeil vN Administrator
    In New Jersey, the standard is $1 million coverage for liability for photographers. 
    I carry $5 million because of the demands of some property owners in New York where I shoot often enough. 

    Also make sure you have Errors & Omissions coverage on top of Liability. 
  • Thanks, Neil. Apparently, the coordinator of the event somehow slipped my contract past legal, and I did the gig last Thursday. Even if I had to get a policy for this job, the agreed-upon price would have made it worth it. I got a quickie on-line quote for a 2 million dollar policy, and it was only 185 bucks, far cheaper than what I was expecting.

    Thanks for the tip on Errors and Omissions. I *think* I know what that would cover, but I'll check it.

  • You should also think about what happens if you accidentally hurt someone or cause extensive damage to a venue while on a shoot.  Without insurance you could lose all savings, your home, etc.
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