Business Insurance Requirements for Photographers and Videographers in Michigan

Whether you’re a wedding photographer in Ann Arbor, a nature photographer in the Upper Peninsula, or you shoot and edit video in Detroit, there’s plenty of work for skilled camera operators in Michigan. You know how your camera works inside and out, but without proper business insurance, damaged equipment or a costly lawsuit could cause your company’s financial prospects to fade out of focus.

There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to choosing the business insurance that will best protect your company. To determine which types of insurance are appropriate, consider your individual risks and major business factors. Are you planning to lease commercial property? Most lease agreements require proof of general liability insurance and/or commercial property insurance. Potential clients may also ask you for proof of professional liability insurance before hiring you for a shoot. Also called errors and omissions insurance, this policy can potentially protect you in the event of a lawsuit from a business discrepancy. Michigan state law requires small businesses to carry workers’ compensation insurance if they employ three or more workers at any one time, or one or more workers for 35 or more hours per week for 13 or more weeks.

Insureon makes shopping for insurance easy with industry-leading technology that gathers quotes from top U.S. carriers that fit your needs. Read more to find out which policies are most common for photographers and videographers in Michigan, and start an application to get your free quotes today.

Find the right insurance policy for your photography business

The most common policies for Michigan photographers and videographers vary depending on factors including revenue, client contracts, and partnerships. The table below illustrates which policies might work best for your business size.


Business type General liability / BOP Professional liability / errors and omissions Workers' comp
Independent contractor / sole proprietor X X  
Employer X X X


General liability insurance: General liability insurance is the foundation of a photographer’s business protection with coverage that extends to bodily injury, client property damage, advertising injury, and the cost of legal defense. Most commercial leases require you to have this coverage.                   

Professional liability insurance: Many clients require proof of professional liability insurance before entering contracts for professional services. This policy, also called errors and omissions insurance or photographer liability insurance, can help cover legal expenses if you’re sued for unsatisfactory work or a business discrepancy.

Business owner's policy (BOP): Photographers and videographers sometimes qualify for a business owner’s policy. This package helps your business save money by bundling commercial property insurance with general liability at an affordable rate.

Michigan workers' compensation: Michigan state law requires workers’ compensation coverage for all small businesses that employ three or more workers at any one time, or one or more workers at 35 or more hours per week for 13 or more weeks. If an employee is injured on the job, workers’ comp can help pay for medical fees and lost wages. Sole proprietors and partners are exempt, but they may choose to purchase workers’ comp. Michigan has a competitive state workers’ comp fund, but you can also use a private insurer. While photography and videography aren’t the most dangerous professions, accidents can occur in any line of work. Lost time due to injury can lead to tremendous financial loss for your business, especially if you’re the sole employee.

Business insurance costs for photographers and videographers in Michigan

How much will business insurance cost? Perhaps less than a new professional camera. In Michigan, photographers and videographers can expect to pay rates lower than the national median to secure their business, according to an analysis of Insureon applications. The biggest deviation from the national rate is workers’ compensation, generally the most expensive policy for photographers and videographers nationwide. In Michigan, a policy is nearly $200 per year less than the national rate. Given that workers’ comp likely constitutes the bulk of your expected insurance costs, it might be wise to consider how many employees your business can sustain. Michigan state law is particularly strict in enforcing laws relating to workers’ comp. Uninsured employers may be subject to steep fines or imprisonment for up to six months. In all, you can expect to pay less than $150 per month to secure your business.

Median Insurance Costs for Michigan Photographers and Videographers

Save time and money with Insureon

Insureon’s industry-leading technology helps photographers and videographers in Michigan save time and money shopping for insurance by comparing policies from dozens of top U.S. carriers. Simply apply online and review quotes for the policies that best fit your business needs. Our insurance specialists are licensed in Michigan and can answer your questions as you consider coverage.

To make the application go even quicker, have this information ready:

  • Workforce details, such as the number and types of employees.
  • Current and projected revenue.
  • Business partnerships.
  • Insurance history and prior claims.
  • Commercial lease insurance requirements.

Apply for free photographer and videographer insurance quotes today.