Public Liability Insurance for Music – Should I get some?

Article posted on Thursday, 19th, January, 2012 at 1:13 pm

The other day, the guitarist from my band text me asking whether we should get public liability insurance. I’d never heard of it, and my only experience with bands having to shell out money was for venue hiring and PRS licensing. Naturally my initial thought was:

 Seems like a colossal waste of money!

Looking into it a bit further, it seems to being sold on the premise that nowadays people will try to sue you if you are hired to play somewhere and your equipment fails, or gets a bad back from carrying your big fat crowd-surfing ass, or even hurting themselves whilst moshing to your monstrous beats!

What an age we live in when people can claim compensation for stuff like that! Any how is it the band’s responsibility? Maybe I don’t understand it properly, so please correct me if I’m wrong, but doesn’t the venue owner share at least some of the responsibility? If not, I might just set up my own music venue and watch the money roll in, whilst laughing at the poor bands trying to get somewhere whilst being charged for renting the space, equipment, music license and insurance! I’ve had so many gigs in the past that didn’t break even (we had to pay to have a gig and didn’t make the money back), so adding an extra tax on top seems like a step too far.

Also, isn’t this public liability stuff for people like doctors?

All I know is, insurance companies make a LOT of money by calculating cost vs risk, and to be frank, I don’t think the risks involved for myself, as a barely gigging musician are worth it at all. Especially when the gigs I’ll be doing in the near future will be for friends and family – and if they try and sue me for any of the above mentioned problems, there’ll be trouble!

I dunno. I probably need to know more to have a more informed opinion, so will have to read up on it. If anyone has any experience with this, please share it!

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