Don't Shoot in the Dark
A Risk Management Guide for Self-Employed Photographers and Videographers

Chapter 2: Special Insurance Considerations for Photography and Videography Professionals
Part 1: What Are the Most Important Insurance Policies for Photographers and Videographers?
Certificates of Liability Insurance for Freelance Photographers and Videographers

A Certificate of Liability Insurance isn't another type of coverage. Rather, it's proof that you have insurance. Often — especially when you are shooting on location — your client or the property owner will ask you for a Certificate of Liability Insurance before your work begins.

A Certificate of Liability Insurance is a simple document that lists…

  • Your liability insurance policies.
  • Your coverage limits.
  • The name and contact information of your insurer.

You can get a Certificate of Liability Insurance by asking your insurance agent. They can usually either send you one to keep on your person or send it directly to the entity that requires it.

Don't be surprised if you need a Certificate of Liability Insurance when you shoot on property owned by…

  • The federal government.
  • A state's government.
  • A local government.
  • A large hotel or other big venue.

Often you'll have to include a Certificate of Liability as part of your permit application.

Sometimes these entities will even ask to be named an Additional Insured on your insurance policy. When you add someone as an Additional Insured to your policy, it allows that person to be protected under your policy while you are on their property. An insurance agent can help you arrange this, and the Additional Insured will be listed on your Certificate of Liability Insurance as well. (Want more information? Read "What Is an Additional Insured? New browser window icon." from our blog.)

Individual clients who hire you may not know to ask for your Certificate of Liability Insurance, but you may be able to use it as a way to stand out from the pack of, say, five other wedding photographers vying for the job. Your client will feel secure knowing you've taken the professional steps necessary to protect yourself and the event.

Stand out from the competition by showing prospective clients your Certificate of Liability Insurance.

Next: Part 2: Freelancers: What Business Insurance Can't Cover

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