Clearly, there is a lot more to being a professional photographer than just knowing when to say “cheese”. Whether yours is a small studio, whether you are called out to mainly family gatherings and celebrations, or whether you are in charge of a large and busy studio, there is likely to be a lot more going on.
Amidst all that coming and going, it might be easy to overlook the possibility of things going wrong and accidents happening – accidents which might nevertheless leave one of your clients, or even a member of the public, injured or with their property damaged in some way. If that injury or loss is at all connected with the way you have been going about your job as a photographer, you may be held liable and ordered to pay compensation.
If it is one of your assistants – or anyone else you employ to help run your business – you may be held even more responsible for any injury or longer-term illness they suffer as a result of their work for you.
All this adds up to some pretty good reasons for consulting the specialists here at constructaquote.com about photographers’ insurance.
- We are specialists in the provision of insurance for small businesses – and service some 33,000 such policies each year
- 95% of our customers rate that service as “good” or “excellent”
- We have been in this business for the past 25 years and more
- We operate only UK-based contact centres
- Our employers’ liability policies come with £10 million of cover as standard.
What’s likely to be included in photography insurance?
Every photographer is different, every photography business is different and the precise risks and perils facing each one are of course likely to be different – depending on the nature and scale of the business and of its clients.
But there are some elements of cover which practically any photographery may do well to consider.
Commercial vehicle insurance
Even if you have your own studio, for example, you may still need transport to get you and your equipment for shoots in any number of different locations. This is likely to call for your own vehicle, which of course needs to have the minimum legal level of motor insurance.
The van might also be the one you and your family use for normal domestic and recreational purposes, but if you use it in any connection with your photography business, you need to make sure that you are also covered for business use as well as having cover for your valuable photography equipment.
Don’t overlook the importance of public liability insurance
Although your legal requirement for motor insurance may be quite obvious, some of the risks to your photography business might be less immediately apparent.
A customer might trip and fall in your studio or your direction of a shoot in some other location might give rise to someone – whether a client, one of their friends or even a member of the public – suffering an injury or having the property damaged in some way.
In any of these circumstances, you may be held responsible for a breach of your duty of care towards any such individual. If you are held responsible, you may be sued for a considerable amount in damages.
Any compensation you have to pay out of course depends on the nature and extent of any injury or property damage suffered. In the case of photography insurance, however, this kind of public liability insurance typically offers a minimum of £1 million of cover.
Your professional reputation may be at stake too
Your role as a photographer depends on satisfying your clients. On many occasions, you may be called upon to capture a one-off or even once in a lifetime event or celebration. Through some oversight or mistake on your part, however, you might have failed to capture those very golden moments you had been commissioned to record.
In that event you might be sued for professional negligence – and the result is likely to bring not only a painful financial blow to your business but also damage your reputation as a photographer.
Photographers professional liability insurance is designed to provide the protection you may need.
You may need employers’ liability insurance too
Do you employ a photographic assistant, someone to help set up your shoots, or someone back in the office, responsible for managing your diary and bookings? In any of these cases, the law is almost certain to insist that you hold employers’ liability insurance. There are exceptions, but these are few and far between, and generally cover your employment only of close family members.
In every other case, the law requires you to hold a minimum of £5 million of employers’ liability insurance – in order to ensure that any employee of yours who is injured or who contracts an illness or other medical condition as a result of their work is able to receive any compensation to which they are entitled.