What would you do if you were hit with a liability suit for more than your current portrait studio insurance covered?
Here at InsuranceHub, we have experience helping photographers just like you. We understand the risks that come with photo shoots, developing film, touching up photographs, and restoring old or damaged prints.
Whether you are taking photos of babies, pets, couples, or families, or if you do headshots, we would like to help you protect what matters most to you in your business.
You have worked hard at building up your photography studio business. You have spent many years of schooling and practice to be a portrait specialist, haven't you? You are rightly concerned about protecting yourself from liability. After all, your clients rely on your advice and the pictures you take of them. That is why photography and portrait studios can be sued for fraud and negligence in performing their duties.
Types of exposure that portrait studio owners need protection from:
Property exposures: This includes your studio, office, and storage space. You have many potential combustibles, including paper, prints, and props that you use in the studio. You have potential ignition sources, including your electrical wiring and your special lighting. The cameras, lenses, computer equipment, and software that you use for your digital photography business are very expensive. Because they are electronic they are highly susceptible to theft, fire/smoke/water damage, and breakage.
Crime exposure: This comes from employee dishonesty. If your employees collect money or provide delivery drop offs, you should have a written policy for tracking orders and receipts. Take the time to do a background check on all employees.
Inland marine exposures include the following:
- Do you provide credit to your customers? Then your accounts receivable is at risk.
- All of your cameras and other photographic equipment will require a commercial articles floater.
- Computers for transacting business and tracking your customer proofs.
- Valuable papers and records for all of your vendor and client information, including digital photographs. Keep copies off site in case originals are destroyed.
- Talk to your agent if you do off-site photo shoots that require you to transport your camera equipment.
- Bailees' customer exposure if you are developing film or repairing or restoring photos for your clients.
Premises liability exposures:
- Trips, slips and falls at your portrait studio. Install all lighting, wiring, and camera stands in a way that your client won't trip over them.
- Be sure to get written authorization BEFORE using your client's photos in your advertising and marketing.
Environmental liability exposure: Are you processing and developing your own film? Toxic chemicals and solutions must be stored safely. Make sure that you dispose of the waste according to state and federal standards.
Automobile exposure: Talk to your InsuranceHub agent if you are doing off-premises photo shoots. Remember to do license and MVR checks on all drivers. Finally, keep copies of all maintenance records on your vehicles.
Workers' compensation exposure: Your biggest concern here is if you are developing your own film on- site. Eye, skin, and lung injury can come from repeated exposure to toxic developing solutions.
Here is the minimum recommended portrait studio insurance coverage:
- Business Personal Property
- Business Income with Extra Expense
- Employee Dishonesty
- Money and Securities
- Accounts Receivable
- Commercial Articles Floater
- Valuable Papers and Records
- General Liability
- Employee Benefits Liability
- Umbrella Liability
- Hired and Nonownership Auto Liability
- Workers' Compensation
Other photographers studio insurance coverage to consider:
- Bailees' Customers Floater
- Employment-related Practices Liability
- Business Auto Liability and Physical Damage
- Stop Gap Liability