insurance isn't stacking up very well.

Discussion in 'Business of Photography' started by fotograaf1957, Aug 16, 2017.

  1. Brown & Brown of Pennsylvania LP is the insurance carrier. They take your money and issue a generic certificate of insurance. If you ask for a copy of the policy, they won't send it and if you ask them for specific certificates of insurance, they won't send that either. I have a photo shoot at the end of this month and I've asked TWICE for a specific certificate of insurance and I get no response from them. Maybe someone from the community can wake them up? You get less than what you pay for.
  2. I left Brown and Brown after a couple of years. They did honor a theft claim when I had one, but other than that there was no customer service at all. As for the specific certificates of insurance, they are actually correct that the generic one will suffice. Unfortunately, not every venue knows that and they will fight you on it. You will have to explain to the venue that the certificate is an umbrella certificate that covers you at all locations where you shoot.

    I found a less expensive policy through my PPA membership, so if you're a member of PPA it's worth looking into. The underwriting company is Lockton Affinity, LLC and I pay just under $300 per year for my general liability policy
    WJT likes this.
  3. Thanks for the update. I'm not a member of PPA, but I've considered it.
  4. The PPA membership actually includes equipment insurance as part of the membership, so it's very much worth it.
  5. G-P

    G-P Administrator Staff Member

    I can reach out to them. Thank you for letting us know. Please PM me within 24 hours and I will stay on them.
  6. Though the PPA recommends an insurance company for General liability for $300 a year don't forget your PPA membership is around $300 a year. So if you can find a local insurance company that you can walk in and personally speak to a licensed insurance associate under $600 then do that instead. The big group insurance companies have tiers of customer service which are not license insurance representatives who only answer basic questions.
    Wilmarco Imaging likes this.
  7. Yes, this is absolutely correct. One way to look at it, however, is that the PPA membership does include equipment insurance as part of the membership. So, if you can get *both* liability *and* equipment insurance for under $600 a year, then PPA's deal isn't as good as what you might find elsewhere at that price. PPA does offer other benefits that help offset that membership, though I must confess I have not taken advantage of them myself.
  8. FWIW - I have fairly complete and inexpensive coverage as a floater to my household policy, but I don't believe it would be valid if I were working commercially.
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2017
    Sandy Vongries likes this.
  9. Using actuarial methods, all insurance companies (life as well as property and liability) try to predict the number of claims per year for a specific group of insureds and the average expected settlement per claim.

    With some groups, that is hard to do because of the diversity of the group. In such cases, if insurance is available (often it is not), the premiums will be high compared with the maximum coverage under the policy issued.

    I am an semi-retired independent translator by night and a non-commercial (hobbyist) photographer by day. The only photo insurance I have (or need) is property theft and damage for my equipment, which is covered by my homeowner's policy. As a board-certified translator who is a member of a professional order, I am required to pay for insurance each year when I renew my certification. Because the group insured (professional translators) has a LONG history of actuarial data and a VERY low claim frequency for personal liability and although settlements are often rather high (but rare), the premium is LOW. This year I paid CA$60 (one annual payment) for personal liability (errors and omissions leading to tort claims). For that very modest premium, I am covered for up to $1 million for each claim, to a maximum of 3 claims per year.

    I think that a commercial photographer who can get similar coverage plus equipment coverage for under $500 a year would be getting a very reasonable deal (especially since in his or her case, the premium is a deductible business expense). For a hobbyist photographer, coverage under homeowner's insurance for equipment and in some cases an umbrella rider for personal liability (which is usually a part of all homeowner's policies).
    Charles_Webster likes this.

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