You own a videographer or photography business. You’ve worked hard over the years and built up a list of clients that refer you to their friends and family. Everything in your business is going perfectly and then one day it happens. While videoing a wedding for a very successful dad who has hired you to make a momentous video of his favorite daughter’s wedding, one of your assistants sells the edited parts of the video to a local tabloid.
The dad discovers the pirated video on the internet and brings an action against your business for $5 million dollars to make his precious little girl feel better. How do you respond to someone who appears to have an endless amount of resources to destroy you and your business? You call your agent to explain the situation and he tells you not to worry because you were smart enough to purchase a $5 million umbrella to supplement your commercial liability policy.
The moral of the story is that a million dollars may not always be enough. Any professional that does business with people of means should consider a Commercial Umbrella policy. This policy sits on top of all the other commercial policies your business has and extends the limit of liability to the limits of the umbrella policy.
In many cases the venue where you will be working will not allow you on their premises with only a million dollars in coverage. A five star venue in the Hamptons is going to require at least $5 million in coverage for you to video a wedding or special event on their property. In almost every case, the most economical way to offer proof of this amount of coverage is by offering a certificate of insurance with an umbrella policy on top of your normal liability policy.
By having the umbrella policy, your $1 million dollar liability policy now becomes $5 million and the venue is happy to have you on their property. They may also require this coverage on your auto and professional liability policies as well. When you purchase the umbrella policy the limits are extended for all of your underlying policies also. This means that you or your employees can screw up big-time and still have the limits of protection you need. Think about it. Is an executive that is worth $20 million going to sue you for $1 million? No, he or she is going to sue you for as much as possible.
It doesn’t have to be just one person that brings the action against you and your company. If you are offering services to a family or company and something terrible goes wrong, you are most likely going to be sued by everyone at the event that has standing to do so. Having a Commercial Umbrella Policy in place will give you and your clients the peace of mind if the worst should happen.
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