Special Event and Party Liability

Special Event and Party Liability

Planning on running a special event?  Special events come in many shapes and sizes, from small private conferences, to festivals or concerts, trade-show, charity function, bike tour, Christmas party, etc.

There are many risks associated with holding special events, including:

  • Injury risks. Employees, volunteers, persons who attend the event, etc., may be injured during the event.
  • Special events often include high-risk activities such as alcohol service, fireworks, children’s rides or games, sporting activities, etc.
  • Reputation risks. If situations are not handled well, the organization’s reputation may be damaged.
  • Financial risks. Large events are subject to even more financial risks, especially if they are to be held outside due to the loss of deposits and non-refundable payments, . For example, is the event needs to be cancelled due to a specific performer cancelling, adverse weather, terrorism, etc. Also, for non-profits, if the event is cancelled, this may affect the amount of financial support that a non-profit receives for the function and in the future.
  • Legal Liability. As an occupier of a premise, you and your organization are responsible for the safety of those who attend a special event. Occupiers must protect patrons from all foreseeable harm.

Sometimes people assume that their existing business insurance will automatically cover them.  If the event is a usual operation for your business, and your insurer knows about it, they might cover your Christmas party, open house, but anything bigger than that – likely not.

Check with your Insurance Broker to make sure that your existing insurer will agree to include these operations in your existing policy.  In some cases you and/or your business will need to purchase a specific short-term policy for your special event.

“Collis” to talk about your special event and let’s make sure that you are properly covered!

Source: Insurance Bureau of Canada

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