Special Event Insurance

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How Much Will Liquor Liability Insurance Cost For A Temporary Event?

Wine & chocolate tastings, Bar Mitzvahs, and weddings are just a few examples of “temporary” events where we write their liquor liability insurance. But one of the most frequently asked questions we receive is, “How Much Will Liquor Liability Insurance Cost For A Temporary Event?”

A temporary event is considered a single, multi-day event that could be a wedding, cocktail party, catering off-site, or special occasion that involves serving liquor.

In addition to offering establishments an ongoing liquor liability insurance policy, Hospitality Insurance Group offers temporary event liquor liability insurance and general liability for smaller events to give you the peace of mind that comes from knowing that you’re protected from unexpected claims.

Examples of some of the temporary events we’ve written include:

Wine & Chocolate Tasting

One-Day Temporary Event
Boston, Massachusetts
Limits: GL & LIQ 1M/1M/2M
Bartending Service in NH Mono-Line LIQ
New Venture with prior experience
Limits: 1M/1M/2M
Premium: $1,277


Bar Mitzvah

Special Event
Washington Crossing, Pennsylvania
Liquor Liability
Limits 1M/1M/2M
Number of Attendees: 70
Total Premium: $416

One of the most frequently asked questions we receive here at Hospitality Insurance Group is, how much does it cost?

Our answer, “it depends.”
For temporary event insurance coverage, Hospitality Insurance Group has five different options with various limits available up to $1Million dollars available.

Our policy amounts range from $125 – $416.

Please note that the rate ranges above shall apply for each day or fraction of a day for which the Insured shall serve or sell alcoholic beverages.

Looking to request coverage for a temporary event?

You can click here to contact one of our preferred partners to request coverage and be sure to include:

• Your name and address, and a description of your business
• A detailed description of the event, including the date, time and duration
• Location of event
• Expected number and age range of attendees
• Whether liquor will be served or sold and whether it’s free of charge or available for purchase
• Types of entertainment to be provided (live band, DJ, dancers, etc.)
• Names of entities requiring coverage as additional insureds
• Estimated liquor sales receipts

Or you can contact your local Independent Insurance Agent and advise them to fill out our  Temporary Event Application for coverage here.

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10 Ways To Help Prevent Potential Lawsuits From Your Company Holiday Party

Tis the season for holiday parties, eggnog and late nights. We attend the ugly sweater parties, the family traditions, and most common, attending the annual work party. Many companies spend weeks, even months, planning their holiday party. They plan everything from where the event will take place down to the type of silverware placed on the table. However, one aspect of the event planning people tend to forget is liquor liability insurance.

Most would like to think their guests are mature, responsible adults who know their limit.

During the holidays that thought process tends to escape the mind of most people. 20% of survey respondents in a 2010 survey by Forbes have said they had too much to drink at a holiday party. We see results of this every year on the news of that one person who made the mistake of getting behind the wheel after a holiday party and taking the life of another driver in fatal car accident. Many think the only person responsible for this accident is the driver, but in many cases, attorneys will sue anyone who may have been responsible including the host, owners, event planners, bartenders, and servers.

Issues arising from the company holiday party could be extreme and some could be just plain embarrassing.

Three possible extreme scenarios include:

  1. Your guests get in an automobile accident on the way home, injuring a family of three.
  2. You or one of your guests is injured during the festivities like this scenario in an article by National Public Radio“At an office party four years ago, a fellow co-worker brought eggnog that contained whiskey, Scotch, as well as bourbon. … It was delicious and the booze was nigh-undetectable. Everyone became incredibly sloshed. … As the night progressed, someone made a makeshift slip-and-slide in the warehouse that was quite fun until the IT guy of the office broke his collarbone going face first and 911 was called. We still talk about this office party to this day.”
  3. Damage to the property from someone allegedly being overserved.

So how do you keep things under control? Here are 10 ways to help prevent a lawsuit from arising from your company holiday party.

  1. Hold your function earlier in the afternoon when people tend to drink less.
  2. There is a reason Fenway park stops serving alcohol after the seventh inning stretch. They are thinking about the safety of their guests and you should too. Stop serving alcohol a few hours before the party is expected to end. Cut off drinks during dinner or dessert to give people a rest from consuming.
  3. Offer Uber gift cards or recommend overnight accommodations to guests.
  4. Offer entertainment like dancing, a photo booth, team games or a comedian so people have something to do other than drink.
  5. Invite families. People are less likely to go a little crazy with the spouse or kids at a company holiday party.
  6. Encourage guests to use transportation such as Uber, Lyft or a taxi to and from the party.
  7. Serve food at the event.
  8. Don’t let people serve themselves, hire a trained staff to serve and monitor guests alcohol consumption.
  9. Make sure bartenders and caterers are TIPS certified.
  10. Only offer beer and wine.

Without liquor liability insurance, you can be held responsible and sued for allowing them to become intoxicated and proceeding to operate a vehicle.

Do you still think liquor liability isn’t a necessity?

Laws regarding liquor licenses and liquor liability coverage vary by state, so it is important to be aware of the laws in your state before planning an event where alcohol is going to be served. If you are an Independent Insurance Agent, click here to learn more about working with Hospitality Insurance Group to provide liquor liability insurance to your customers. If you are a business owner looking for liquor liability insurance coverage, click here to contact one of our preferred Independent Insurance Agents or find answers to some of your frequently asked questions about our insurance coverage here.

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Liquor Liability Insurance For Weddings

The most memorable day of your life has arrived. The flowers, the dress, the guest list, with so many facets of planning, it’s important not to forget about the one small often overlooked item that many don’t think about – obtaining liquor liability insurance coverage for your wedding.

Temporary event liquor liability insurance is necessary if you are catering your wedding yourself or if the venue or catering company does not have liquor liability coverage.

According to The Knot’s 2016 Wedding Study, the national average cost of a wedding is $35,329.

With a hefty price tag like that, more and more couples are looking to save on the wedding venue costs by hosting their wedding outside in public parks.

A wedding wine station, a bucket of beers, with so many creative Pinterest wedding ideas for serving alcohol, it’s important to remember that you take on the added responsibility of your guests when serving alcohol at your temporary event.

Bride’s and groom’s to be may purchase a “temporary event” or one-time liquor liability insurance policy to cover them for any potential charges that may stem from alcohol consumption at a special event that they are hosting.

There are two factors in the cost of obtaining liquor liability insurance coverage for your wedding.

  • The insurance premium cost is based on the number of people that will be in attendance
  • How long the event will last

At Hospitality Insurance Group, factors such as the type of alcohol served or whether or not your wedding has a cash bar does not affect the premium cost.  

In addition to liquor liability insurance coverage for your wedding, we also recommend reminding guests not to drink and drive by placing various signage that encourages your guests to download an app like Uber to get home.

Since summer tends to be one of the biggest times of the year for weddings, and also the hottest, it’s also a good idea to provide water bottles in a bucket of ice for guests to stay hydrated. A good rule of thumb is for each alcoholic beverage a guest has, they should have one glass of water as mentioned in our 4th of July blog here.

Not sure if obtaining a policy is right for you? Check with your local venue or catering company, or contact your local insurance agent to find out if Hospitality Insurance Group coverage is right for your wedding day.

Learn more about temporary event coverage or click here to obtain a liquor liability insurance quote for your wedding from one of our Premium Partners.

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Celebrate Safely: Why You Need Liquor Liability for Holiday Parties

What comes to mind when you hear the words “Holiday Party” or “New Year’s Celebration?” For most it means food, family, friends and fun. But what’s the best way to celebrate the end of a year and the start to a new one? With festive drinks of course.

It has become generally accepted that special events wouldn’t be as special without alcohol, especially around the holidays. Despite the omnipresent nature of alcohol this time of year, little thought is typically given to liquor liability or control of alcohol consumption.

If a drunk driver gets into an accident and injures or kills someone, it doesn’t matter whether the driver is coming from a bar, a restaurant or a holiday party. Someone is likely to be sued for millions of dollars.

Given the potential liability, anyone planning an event where alcohol will be served should be certain to take precautions. Event planning should include a process for preventing overindulgence. Even the most careful planning is not foolproof, so liquor liability insurance coverage is also a necessity.

Who’s Responsible?

Typically, whoever is pouring the alcohol can be held liable if intoxication results in an accident or injury. If a caterer is serving food and beverages, be certain the caterer is properly insured and has liquor liability coverage. If an event is being held at a business that frequently holds functions, the owner should have liquor liability coverage.

However, even if those who are serving alcohol have liquor liability coverage, never assume that you have the protection you need. Remember that when a suit is filed, the attorney typically will sue everyone who may be held responsible in any way. That may include a caterer and the owner of the facility that held the function, but it also may include the bartender and whoever organized the function.

If an event is being held in a home, homeowner’s insurance will usually provide liquor liability coverage, although liability coverage is typically limited to $100,000 to $300,000, depending on the policy. Homeowners should check with their agent. Cases involving homeowners as “social hosts” typically have been sympathetic to the homeowner, especially if individuals became intoxicated without the homeowner’s knowledge or when the homeowner did not supply the alcoholic beverages.

However, in the landmark case of McGuiggan v. New England Tel. & Tel. Co., which took place in 1986, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court said that, given an appropriate case, it would “recognize a social host liability to a person injured by an intoxicated guest’s negligent operation of a motor vehicle” where the host should have known the guest was drunk, but permitted the guest to drive, resulting in an injury.

Preventing Liquor Liability

So what should you do to protect yourself when serving alcohol?

  • Hire only experienced, trained bartenders. Bartenders are trained to recognize when individuals have had too much to drink.
  • Have someone continuously monitor the premises. During a function, if no one is watching, adults may buy drinks for minors or minors may go from table to table, sipping adults’ drinks until they become intoxicated.
  • Purchase one-day liquor liability coverage or add your name to an existing liquor liability policy. Coverage may be available for as little as a couple hundred dollars for a function, depending on the number of attendees and the coverage limits.

In Massachusetts, to obtain liquor liability insurance, the applicant must have a temporary license for serving alcohol. According to Massachusetts law, “A ‘Special License’ to pour liquor at an indoor or outdoor activity or enterprises may be issued to the responsible manager” of the activity or enterprise.

The license is issued by the local licensing authority of the city or town in which the activity is scheduled to take place. In smaller towns,  a license may not be required. In such cases, the sponsor must write a letter stating that no license is required to hold the event and submit the letter when purchasing insurance.

According to the statute, the license may be issued “to a natural person,” who may be acting on behalf of a corporation, partnership or other entity. Temporary licenses can be granted to any entity for up to 30 days in any calendar year. This limit applies to all entities except college dining halls.

Laws regarding liquor licenses and liquor liability coverage vary by state, so it is important to be aware of the laws in your state before planning an event where alcohol is going to be served.

At any special event, perhaps the most important rule is to use common sense. Drink responsibly this holiday season. In doing so, you could save a life.

John W. Tympanick is President & CEO of Hospitality Insurance Group.


Please be advised that the opinions expressed are the views of the author alone and should not be attributed to any other individual or entity and shall not constitute a legal opinion.