Wedding Insurance

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By: Susan Manning

Your wedding day is one like no other — it’s your turn for a fairytale-come-true and you want it to be perfect. Wedding insurance is a way to get protection for your special day.

Most people who we recently surveyed didn’t realize wedding insurance existed. We asked 500 people about their weddings and wedding insurance, and found that 52% said they didn’t know wedding insurance is an option.

“These days, many venues actually require wedding insurance when couples book the place. Nevertheless, because weddings are a costly investment, it’s always a good idea to make sure that no matter what happens, you’re covered for any eventuality,” said David Berke, founder and CEO at eWed Insurance.

Weddings can be a major investment, which is why you may want wedding insurance. More than one-third said they paid at least $10,000 for their weddings.

How does wedding insurance work?

Wedding insurance falls under special event coverage and usually comes in one-day, two-day and weekend length policies. There are two general types of policies:

• Liability

• Cancellation

Todd Shasha, managing director of personal insurance product management at Travelers, said wedding insurance is the perfect way to protect a significant investment.

“No matter the size, location and scale of your nuptials, a wedding is a significant investment as couples and their families plan full weekends complete with a rehearsal dinner, the wedding event itself and perhaps a celebratory send-off brunch. A wedding insurance policy helps to protect that investment from common and costly mishaps that can occur before, during and after the celebration,” he said.

What is wedding cancellation insurance?

Cancellation covers a canceled event due to illness of family, extreme weather situations or other unforeseen incidents.

According to Shasha, as long as your reason is covered, wedding insurance can be a real benefit. He added that Travelers claim data show that vendor/venue issues and severe weather are the most common and expensive causes for wedding insurance claims.

It doesn’t cover cold feet, though. A change of heart isn’t protected and neither is a simple rainstorm. The weather would need to be extreme enough to prevent a safe ceremony or safe travels to and from the ceremony. Cancellation policies also don’t cover a vendor change once you make the deposit.

“Wedding insurance policies will help protect you in the event you have to postpone your event or cancel it entirely for those reasons and can also protect from other exposures, such as lost deposits, unplanned venue closings, military deployments or medical emergencies,” Shasha said.

Ivy Summer, certified wedding planner at Voulez Events, said it’s vital for couples to review the contract’s language and ask if the coverage protects against acts of God.

“We call this the Force Majeure clause. It refers to anything that significantly impedes on vendors’ ability to fulfill on their contracts. It’s important to make sure the language insures you against anything that’s outside of anyone’s control,” Summer said.

What is wedding liability insurance?

Liability coverage handles venue damages or injuries and illnesses to people at the wedding site. Some companies also offer liquor liability coverage, which covers you if a drunk guest gets into an accident after the wedding.

Shasha said there are many options under the liability policies.

“Optional liability and liquor liability coverage can be added to a wedding insurance policy to protect your contractually assumed exposures, such as bodily injury, property damage and personal injuries to third parties at the venues where your wedding ceremony, reception and rehearsal dinner will be held. Some venues require proof of liability insurance before the event takes place, so it’s a good idea to get in touch with your venue ahead of time to make sure you have the right coverage,” said Shasha.

Kerri McDonald from WedSure has seen many claims over the years, including hurricanes, fires, deaths in the family and closed venues.

“All sorts of things happen. A lot of people get injured at weddings as well and sue the venue and the bride and groom. Those are very large claims that can go into hundreds of thousands of dollars,” she said.

Remember, while everyone hopes for the perfect, problem-free wedding day, that’s not always the case. 

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