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Should musicians and entertainers have event insurance?

April 23, 2021

With the nation emerging out of lockdown, and events starting to get back on track, many artists, new and old, are reconsidering their use of insurance. The COVID-age has made workers more aware and alert, understanding the need for financial cover. So, what are the rules around event insurance for performers?

Most long-standing professional musicians and entertainers know that comprehensive insurance is vital. It will always need to be in place for every gig, whether that’s a private outdoor party, beer garden gig or public ticketed event. Yet, an Insure Our Event survey revealed that 50% of respondents had no event insurance cover in place pre-lockdown. That is a particularly worrying statistic, and shows the importance of raising awareness amongst the industry.

Many unions offer basic policies as part of their membership, but musicians and performers should not be complacent. Thoroughly check your policy and make sure you are covered for the correct amount. Performers may need to take out additional insurance.

What are the rules for outdoor events and what specific type of insurance do musician’s and entertainer’s need?

Public Liability Insurance, is it required?

Seasoned performers know that public liability is not negotiable. When hiring a musician, venues will require musicians and performers to have their own insurance.

If a member of the public is involved in an accident whilst at an event, public liability insurance will cover legal fees and any compensation pay-out. If the accident or injury is a direct result of the musician or performer’s negligence, then it will be their liability rather than the venue or event organiser. Therefore, it’s important for musicians, bands and entertainers to take out their own policy rather than rely on the venue’s or organiser’s insurance.

A musician’s public liability insurance will also cover them financially if they accidently damage someone else’s property or equipment, such as the venue’s sound system or lighting.

Event Equipment Insurance stops you dipping into your savings.

What happens if your equipment is lost, stolen or damaged? If the incident is not your fault, you could claim through your Event Equipment Insurance. But if you want to embrace your inner Jimi Hendrix and go about smashing up your guitars, this insurance will not cover intentional damage. However, if circumstances are unforeseen and it’s accidental damage, then you can make a claim.

Allianz reports that over 25% of musicians will have an instrument lost or stolen, costing around £650 a time. Whether you’ve had a guitar stolen from a venue, a vehicle or you’ve simply left it behind on public transport you should always have insurance cover just in case.

Instruments are expensive and no amount of money can replace the feel of the strings, but a claim can go someway to purchasing a replacement.

Employers’ Liability Insurance, it’s required for venues.

Venue owners, if you employ session musicians or crew, you’ll need Employers’ Liability Insurance. This means you’ll be covered if they get hurt whilst working with you and decide to claim against you. So, if your guitarist falls off stage because of poor risk management or your keyboard player hurts their back lifting heavy equipment and they are no longer able to work, they could make a claim against you to cover their loss of earnings, medical expenses and legal fees.

Ultimately, you have a responsibility for anyone you employ – whether they’re freelance, a temporary member of staff or a volunteer. Make sure you have adequate cover to protect your team in the case that something does go wrong.

My event got cancelled! Am I covered?

If your event is cancelled for reasons beyond your control, you are at risk of being out of pocket. In the post-COVID era, an outdoor event could be cancelled for a number of reasons: adverse weather, flooding, fire, illness. Event Cancellation Insurance will cover you for any irrecoverable costs.

Event Cancellation premiums may be on the rise but it’s still important to be covered. They can be purchased by both performers and venue owners. You may have already booked transport, accommodation or hired equipment – all of which will still need to be paid for whether the event goes ahead or not. Liability for the costs could be either the performer’s or the organiser’s depending upon the terms in the contract. If you, the performer, are found to be liable, you will need to cover your own costs if you have not bought Event Cancellation Insurance.

Does Event Cancellation Insurance cover me for COVID-related illness cancellations?

No, for the most part, Insure Our Event will not cover cancellations due to COVID-related illness.

If you have an accident which prevents you from performing at the gig, you will need Personal Accident Cover. To be covered for illnesses such as contracting COVID, our cover will not insure you and you may need more specialist cancellation insurance. Specialist policies will often only cover a fixed fee.

If the injury is developed at the venue, or if the event is cancelled due to COVID, then the matter falls into another type of insurance. If the event is cancelled beyond your control, then you can claim for financial loss.

We’ve got you.

Venue or performer, Insure Our Event will help you arrange one-off event insurance. We will ensure you are not caught out of pocket by unforeseeable circumstances. But we won’t just stop there. Our team are experts in the industry and can provide a wide range of event advice – including helping you with your outdoor event risk management and staff procedures.

The most important point for us is that your event goes smoothly, and if that doesn’t happen, you and your equipment are covered for any eventuality.

Get in touch with our team to find out how we can help!

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