Understanding Holiday Party Risks

| Business Insurance, Home Safety Tips, Insurance Claims, Risk Management, Special Event Insurance.

‘Tis the season for gift giving, sleigh rides and holiday parties.  With those parties comes a degree of risk for the host and our obligatory blog posting about how to prevent injury and insurance claims.

Liquor Liability

Some states hold hosts liable for intoxicated guests that cause injury or property damage after leaving the event.   Nevada, in contrast, has statutory protection for servers of alcoholic beverages (NRS 41.1305).  It is important to note, however, that this protection only apply if the guests consuming alcohol are over age 21.

If you are serving alcohol at a party, we recommend you consider checking ID’s before opening the bar.  Also verify whether your homeowner or business liability policy includes coverage for “host” liquor liabiity.  Many policies will cover liquor liability claims, as long as the policy owner is not in the business of selling alcoholic beverages.

Food Borne Illness

Around 48 million Americans develop a foodborne illness every year.  The buffet style food service common at many parties is susceptible to food contamination or spoilage.  Taking some simple precautions, such as separating meats from other foods and maintaining proper temperature can prevent many problems.  Another good tip is asking guests to use a clean plate when going back for seconds (or thirds).

Remember that regardless of whether the food is provided by a caterer or you, if a guest develops a foodborne illness the host may be liable for medical bills and other claims of bodily injury.

Slip and Fall Injury

Thankfully, in Las Vegas we don’t typically have to worry about icy conditions, but that doesn’t mean a guest will not find a way to slip, trip or fall at your party.   When you consider that the number one cause of spine and neck injuries is slip and fall accidents, it makes sense to remove any possible hazards from the event location.

We recommend you have a plan to deal with any spills immediately.  Also look at the flooring transitions, such as carpet to tile, and make sure there is no raised lip where shoes can catch.   Make sure steps are clear of debris or obstructions and that handrails are secure.

Theft of Property

It is hard to imagine that your invited guests might have sticky fingers, but better safe than sorry.   Before a party, make sure you have secured any items that include things like account numbers, bank statements and checkbooks.   Make sure other valuable items like jewelry and small electronic gadgets are stowed in a safe place.

Special Event Insurance

Lastly, consider special event insurance to protect you from the risks related to a holiday party.   This specialized coverage can provide general liability, liquor liability, non-owned auto liability and coverage for rented property like tables, chairs, audio-video equipment, etc.   Best of all, the price is very affordable, usually less than $150 for a comprehensive policy.

Contact us today for a quote on special event insurance for your holiday party.