Nonprofit Insurance Program

The In’s and Out’s of Special Event Coverage

By Alexa Connelly
February 23, 2018

Fundraising is a task that takes up a great deal of any nonprofit’s time and volunteer resources. These days successful fundraising efforts require more than sending donation letters in the mail. Special fundraising events have increasingly become the norm for nonprofits of all sizes. Events like 5K runs, galas, and charity auctions are just a few event concepts nonprofits are embracing. While they bring a great reward in the way of increased donations and awareness, special events also increase your nonprofit’s risk.

Chances are if you work with a local venue to plan and organize your fundraising event, you will sign a contract. Part of that contract will include an insurance clause that requires you to carry special event insurance to cover activities during your event.

What is Special Event Insurance?

Special event insurance is a policy that protects your nonprofit incase an incident at your event becomes a lawsuit. Coverage includes losses due to property damage or bodily injury. Liquor liability can also be added if you plan on selling alcohol at your event.

Many venues require you to carry special event insurance and name their business as an additional insured on the policy. Since the majority of businesses carry business insurance, this may be confusing. They make it a requirement to prevent becoming part of a lawsuit for activities out of their control and to assure they receive payment for damage to their property. Let’s take a look at two examples of how venues benefit from this requirement:

Bodily Injury

You decide to set up a stage for your event entertainment. During the networking time, it collapses causing props to fall into the crowd. A handful of guests experience injuries that need medical attention. The injured guests may not realize you rented the stage and think it’s part of the venue. If they decide to press charges, they can sue both you and the site. If you have a special event policy naming the venue as an additional insured, your policy will cover the costs for both of you.

Property Damage

You’ve hired a DJ for your annual gala. For some reason, he decides to drag his equipment across the floor, leaving scratches in the brand new marble flooring. The venue will expect to be reimbursed for the damages including labor costs for replacing it.

In both of these cases, not having event insurance could put your nonprofit in danger for loss of financial resources. By having the right insurance in place, you can use the nonprofit’s money to continue your mission.

Where Can You Buy Special Event Insurance?

Contact your nonprofit’s insurance agent to see if you currently have any event insurance on your general liability policy. Some policies include some types of special events. If it doesn’t include the coverage, special event insurance is easy to find and secure. Most companies require a special application and description of the event to offer an insurance proposal. Or you can request an event insurance quote online today.



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