Liquor Liability: What it is and why you should have it.
Champagne toasts. Open Bar. Cocktail hour. There will most likely be alcohol served at the special event you are hosting. Especially weddings. If you are a bride and groom that is even considering serving alcoholic drinks at your wedding, liquor liability definitely needs to be a term you are familiar with.
So what is liability insurance? Well liability insurance provides coverage for property damage, bodily injury, and personal injury to third parties at the location of your event. For example, if a guest trips and falls at your wedding, this provides the necessary protection for that possible liability. Liquor liability is an optional coverage that is added onto the liability coverage for a nominal fee. This simply provides protection to you and your immediate family in the event of an alcohol-related accident. So let’s just paint a little picture for you to get a better idea of exactly why this is so important to consider: you just got married to the love of your life and your family and friends are having a ball dancing the night away at your reception. Even though there is not an open bar, your guests can purchase their own beer and cocktails.
Towards the end of the night, your cousin, Greg, has had a few too many beers and he is getting a little tipsy, so he decides it’s time to go home and head to bed. While he is driving home, he swerves into on-coming traffic and hits another car head-on. The damage is pretty bad and the other driver automatically brings to attention a sharp pain in his neck. The other driver not only files claims with his insurance company for the damage to his car, but he sues both you and your spouse as well as your venue for allowing a guest to leave your wedding obviously intoxicated. Without liquor liability, any costs would come directly out of your pocket. WITH liquor liability, you have coverage for whatever may happen as a result of an intoxicated third party guest.
To condense what you need to know about liquor liability, here are a few main points:
Liquor liability protects you from greater costs at little cost to you.
Like I mentioned before, this liability coverage can help protect you against any lawsuit if you are found responsible in an alcohol-related lawsuit.
Damage to a venue caused by an alcohol related incident is also covered.
Regular liability coverage will cover any damage to the venue, but if it is caused by any intoxicated guests, that’s a different story. Liquor liability is the only thing that’s going to cover the cost of the broken table caused by the drunk groomsman that decided to body slam himself onto the nearest object after giving a very interesting toast to the happy couple. Trust me, you don’t think these things happen, but they absolutely do.
There is no deductible!
Compared to other large competitors, such as Wedsafe, there is no deductible or extra cost to you! Using Wedsafe as an example, if something does happen at your event that results in a lawsuit or a pay-out, you don’t pay a dime after you pay your premiums and deductibles. Wedsafe has a $1,000 deductible, which can be devastating after you just spent $30,000 on your wedding.
Your venue can cancel your event without it.
Most venues in the event industry that serve their own alcohol have liquor liability insurance for themselves. Here is the catch: if you, the bride and groom, are catering the event yourself, bringing in an outside caterer, or the catering company or venue does not already have a host liquor liability insurance policy in place, it’s up to you to make sure you have that coverage. ALWAYS FIND OUT FROM YOUR VENUE/VENDORS IF THEY REQUIRE COVERAGE. If your venue requires you to have that coverage for your wedding or other special event, and you show up the day of without it, they have every right to cancel your event. No questions asked.
Liquor liability is available for your purchase up until the day of your wedding.
In most states, as long as your policy is paid for in full, you can add this coverage up until the day of your special event..
On any big day, the last thing you want to be doing is stressing or worrying. Of course, I can’t promise that having liquor liability insurance will take away the stress of the entire day. But I can promise you that you won’t have to worry about the risk of serving alcohol to your guests and having to deal with the repercussions. When you purchase liability insurance, you are purchasing a peace of mind. Of course, we pray that this coverage will never have to be used, but life happens, and we know that.