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General liability insurance for photographers and videographers

General liability insurance icon
General liability insurance

General liability insurance covers customer injuries, customer property damage, and related lawsuits. It’s often required for commercial leases and contracts.

General liability insurance covers common risks

Whether it’s part of your photography insurance, videography insurance, or film production insurance, general liability insurance protects against common business risks. It can pay for medical bills if a customer is injured at your studio, or if you accidentally damage a client’s property while on a video shoot. If you decide to rent a studio, most landlords will require you to carry this policy in order to sign a commercial lease.

This policy provides liability coverage related to:

  • Customer injuries
  • Customer property damage
  • Advertising injuries

Bundle policies to save money and increase security

If you run a small photography or film production studio, you may be able to bundle general liability insurance with commercial property insurance in a business owner’s policy. A BOP typically costs less than purchasing each policy separately. Businesses that are eligible for BOPs usually:

  • Have fewer than 100 employees
  • Have a small office or workplace
  • Make less than $1 million in annual revenue
  • Operate in a low-risk industry, such as photography or videography
  • Need less than 12 months of business interruption insurance
Compare quotes for general liability insurance or a business owner's policy

What coverage can general liability provide for photo and video companies?

Third-party injuries

If a model or actor is injured by a lighting stand that tips over, or a delivery person slips and falls at your studio, you might be held responsible for the injury. If the person sues, you may need to pay for medical expenses – plus the cost of hiring a lawyer. General liability insurance covers:

  • Medical bills
  • Attorney's fees
  • Judgments or settlements
  • Funeral expenses in fatal incidents

Note that this policy does not cover employee injuries. For that, you’ll need workers’ compensation insurance.

Customer property damage

Photographers and videographers frequently work on location, which means taking on additional risks. If you accidentally break a client’s business equipment or damage property at a wedding venue, your general liability policy could help cover repairs or replacement costs. It can also cover legal bills if someone sues over property damage.

General liability insurance can protect your business from incidents that occur at your office, too. For example, if you accidentally spill coffee on a customer’s laptop, your general liability policy should cover the cost of a replacement computer.

Advertising injuries

While advertising your company and its services, it’s possible to inadvertently copy another videographer’s slogan or mimic a rival photographer's advertising campaign. Accidental advertising injuries are covered by general liability insurance, including:

  • Defamation, both libel (written) and slander (spoken)
  • Copyright infringement

If you use advertising or promotional materials to attract clients to your photography or videography business, you’ll want to make sure your insurance includes this protection.

Other important insurance policies to consider

While general liability insurance covers many risks inherent to the photo and video industry, it does not provide complete protection. Photographers and videographers should also consider:

Business owner’s policy: A BOP offers protection against the most common risks in the photo and video industry at a discount. It bundles general liability insurance with commercial property insurance at a lower rate than purchasing both policies separately. If a client is injured at your office or a thief steals your camera equipment, your BOP can cover the costs.

Professional liability insurance: This policy is critical for photo and video professionals. Also called errors and omissions insurance, it can help pay for lawsuits related to work performance. For example, if a wedding videographer misses the bride and groom’s first kiss, or a photographer accidentally deletes the images from a catalog shoot, professional liability insurance can pay for legal expenses if the client sues.

Workers’ compensation: This policy is required in most states for businesses that have employees. It can cover medical expenses when an employee is injured on the job. If an assistant photographer twists an ankle while on a shoot, or a grip hurts his back while loading equipment, workers’ comp can pay for medical bills as well as partial lost wages.

Get free quotes and compare policies with Insureon

Are you ready to safeguard your photography or videography business with general liability insurance? Complete Insureon’s easy online application to compare quotes from top U.S. carriers. Once you find a policy that fits your needs, you can begin coverage in less than 24 hours.

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