Liquor Liability Insurance for Wedding Hosts

Why Liquor Liability Insurance is an Absolute MUST When Planning a WeddingJuly 6, 2021

A wedding is one of the most important days in a couples’ life together, and many prefer not to think about the chance of something going wrong. But when you serve alcohol at a wedding or other social event, the potential for an incident often increases. Many wedding hosts may not be aware that they could be financially responsible for the cost of property damages or injuries that happen due to alcohol intoxication.

What is Host Liquor Liability Insurance?

At many weddings, it is common to serve alcohol and/or have an open bar for your guests. When you decide to include alcoholic beverages at your wedding venue, you are also responsible for any negative repercussions. If an accident or damage occurs and alcohol is the primary cause, you could be financially liable for the incident.

Liquor Liability coverage for weddings and other social events help protect couples from financial losses if something goes wrong because of intoxicated guests. Liquor Liability Insurance could cover an injury or property damage incident caused by serving alcohol.


Who Needs Liquor Liability Insurance in Canada?

Canada’s Smart Serve liquor laws prohibit servers from distributing alcohol to individuals who are intoxicated. Primary Liquor Liability Insurance protects the servers and business catering events that serve alcoholic drinks. But monitoring guests’ alcohol consumption can be tricky.

Host Liquor Liability Insurance covers the wedding hosts. If an incident occurs, all parties involved in serving alcohol could be held responsible for damages. Some wedding venues require the hosts to purchase Liability coverage to obtain a liquor permit.

However, Liquor Liability coverage is highly recommended for all wedding events serving alcohol. Unexpected accidents and injuries can happen at any time, potentially leaving the hosts responsible for the financial damages. By securing protection beforehand, you can celebrate your special day worry-free.


Example of Liquor Liability at a Wedding

Consider a hypothetical example in which a wedding host serving alcoholic beverages could encounter a Liquor Liability claim. A guest, unaccustomed to drinking, quickly becomes intoxicated at the wedding reception. At first, the guests’ drunkenness goes unnoticed since they appear to be having an enjoyable time with the rest of the group on the dance floor.

Another guest orders a round of drinks for the group, and the already intoxicated individual accepts. After a few minutes, the drunken guest stumbles backward, knocking an expensive camera out of the hands of another family member who is also intoxicated.

The camera owner had sentimental ties to the camera, causing them to lash out in rage and punch the responsible guest, starting a fight. Both parties leave the reception with injuries, damaged property, and medical bills.

Days later, the wedding hosts receive a notice that they are partially liable for the financial damages, amounting to over $5,000. The newly married couple must cancel their honeymoon because they did not have Host Liquor Liability Insurance to help pay the expenses.


How Liquor Liability Insurance Protects Wedding Hosts

Typically, Host Liquor Liability Insurance protects wedding hosts from the financial impacts of covered personal injury or property damage claims involving alcohol. This type of policy offers essential protection to wedding hosts who want to minimize the financial risks of including alcoholic beverages at your event.


What Liquor Liability Covers

Depending on your policy, Liquor Liability for Hosts usually covers the following:

  • Legal fees resulting from a lawsuit, including attorney fees
  • If the court finds you liable, coverage can help pay for the cost of damages
  • Your policy may also help you pay for settlements outside court

The cost typically varies according to the wedding’s location, the number of guests, and the age of your guests.


What Liquor Liability Does NOT Cover

If you have Host Liquor Liability Insurance, it is critical that you recognize your responsibility to serve alcohol responsibly. There are some instances that your insurer may not cover, such as:

  • Serving alcohol to individuals under the legal drinking age
  • Damage to the hosts’ property
  • Knowingly allowing guests to pursue dangerous activities
  • Other acts of negligent supervision

Taking precautions to prevent unnecessary accidents or injuries can help prevent claims, ensuring that an event that serves alcohol runs smoothly.


Tips to Minimizing Alcohol Consumption

By minimizing alcohol consumption at your wedding, you can avoid potentially costly claims. Consider reducing your risk of a Liquor Liability incident by taking the following steps.

  • Ensure the venue’s staff have the appropriate training, liquor licenses and are Smart Serve certified.
  • Determine who will be the designated drivers before the event.
  • Limit the number of drink tickets each guest receives for alcoholic beverages.
  • Refrain from serving hard liquor
  • Offer non-alcoholic alternatives
  • Have taxis and hotel rooms available for guests that become too intoxicated to drive.
  • Keep guests occupied with activities.

Doing everything you can to control or limit how much each guest drinks can help reduce the chance of an expensive accident.


Main Takeaways

Many individuals do not know that special insurance is available or that it protects them from liquor liability claims on their wedding day. However, it only takes one intoxicated guest to make a single bad decision that results in expensive legal fees or property damage. The financial consequences can be devastating to newlyweds, who may not have known they would be held accountable for someone else’s behavior.

As a wedding host, you could be liable for the costs of accidents and property damage caused by intoxicated guests. By taking precautions and planning responsibly, you can reduce the chances of alcohol-related incidents. Protecting yourself financially with a Host Liquor Liability Insurance allows you to focus on what matters on your wedding day.


Final Thoughts

Accidents should not tarnish the memories of your wedding day. Host Liquor Liability Insurance is affordable coverage that helps cover the costs of property damage and personal injury resulting from alcohol consumption.

If you are planning a wedding, Duliban Insurance can help you navigate your Liquor Liability coverage options and select a policy that is right for your event. At Duliban Insurance, our team of dedicated agents can help you determine how much protection you need for complete peace of mind on your special day.

Contact Duliban Insurance and talk to one of our licensed agents today!


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