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Topic: Business Insurance? Do you have it?  (Read 1604 times)
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Painted Sparrow
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« on: January 27, 2012 01:05:52 PM »

So, I've run into a bit of a snag in my business planning.... I want to do everything right & have been looking into business insurance, the problem is that I am such an eclectic creative type. I span from offering services as a theatrical designer to creating goods as a crafter & digital art which I feel like should fall somewhere in between services & goods. Huh I'm hoping you guys could just answer some questions for me & offer me some insight into what I should be looking for.

What do you do/make/sell?
Are you registered as a business?
If so, what type of business?
Do you have business insurance?
a) What does it cover? (liability, intellectual property, business property, business auto, etc)
b) How much coverage does it include?
c) If you're comfortable answering, how much does it cost you per year?
d) Have you always had insurance, or did you add it when you became more profitable?
e) If you, by chance, have insurance with Fractured Atlas, how was the experience & was it worth it?

Also, any other insights or advice is appreciated. Undecided Right now, I've identified two major routes to go, based on my talks with insurance companies. A) I start with an entertainment program & add on coverage I need for crafting, which could get pretty expensive to do a la carte style, or B) I split into two separate entities, but I am quite certain that I can't handle running two businesses & I don't want to just forsake one side of what I want to do in case the one I do start is a flop, & that would probably be really expensive to execute the two companies. If it matters at all for additional input, I should note that we already have health & auto insurance.

I've been on the phone for 3 hours today with insurance companies & am only slightly less confused that I was before. I'm not all that savvy on the logistics, I'm business-minded in a way, but not in handling insurance or tax jargon. Cry Help, please.
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Chris in VT
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2012 04:16:20 AM »

I'm a crafter. I do craft show for a living. I do around 40+/- shows per year. And of course I have insurance.

I want liability insurance in case someone trips and falls inside my booth.  I have $1,000,000 in liability coverage.
I want to be covered in case someone steals my register at a show.
I want coverage in case there's a major wind and my canopy flies and hits someone's car. (It has never happened since I got my canopy in 1987.)
I want coverage if my truck is broken into and I am robbed.
And since more promoters are requiring exhibitors to have insurance I am covered.
I am with RLI Insurance. They're a company who specializes in our business.
My premium? $279 per year. And I've been with them since 1990.
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« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2012 06:04:48 AM »

I learned from my cheffing days that IF your insurance company pushes some kind of "standard policy" coverage on you, you CAN actually get stuff removed that you don't want. So if you talk to an agent, keep that in mind.

As far as Fractured Atlas goes, it might be a "pool", where the entire group is covered for, say, $2 million per year, and if that 2 mil runs out, if you have a problem after that you're out of luck. So if you want complete peace of mind, you're better off getting your own coverage.
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« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2012 09:09:56 AM »

oK, that's great info!

Chris, I'm nowhere near the point of doing craft shows yet, but I'm making note of all of that for when I do! I will also look into RLI, see if they will also cover the theatrical half of what I want to do.

CraftyChef, also great to know! Part of what I found in my calls yesterday is that the entertainment stuff is really specialized, so I'll have to see what I can trim off of that. And that's a good point about FA, I'd never heard of them until I found them through a professional theatre organization I'm a member of & they advertised as a non-profit, so that may be the case. Especially considering the membership fee...so I'm glad you knew about that.

Let me tell you, I'm sorely regretting not taking a business course in college because I have very limited understanding of jargon so far as the logistical stuff goes.
« Last Edit: January 28, 2012 09:10:17 AM by Painted Sparrow » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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Chris in VT
« Reply #4 on: January 29, 2012 04:04:57 AM »

Let me tell you, I'm sorely regretting not taking a business course in college because I have very limited understanding of jargon so far as the logistical stuff goes.
I can't count the number of artists who enter the business of art fairs with a degree and have never taken one business course.

They enter the art show world thinking the promoters should give them free spaces, and other exhibitors should supply them with an extra canopy. Just a note, good canopies can cost up to $1,000, but you can get a very good starter one for under $200. 

They're thrown out into the real world and the shock is amazing. They're $50,000-$60,000 in debt without a clue as to how to make any money.
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Painted Sparrow
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« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2012 06:49:28 AM »

Let me tell you, I'm sorely regretting not taking a business course in college because I have very limited understanding of jargon so far as the logistical stuff goes.
I can't count the number of artists who enter the business of art fairs with a degree and have never taken one business course.

They enter the art show world thinking the promoters should give them free spaces, and other exhibitors should supply them with an extra canopy. Just a note, good canopies can cost up to $1,000, but you can get a very good starter one for under $200. 

They're thrown out into the real world and the shock is amazing. They're $50,000-$60,000 in debt without a clue as to how to make any money.

Yea, I'd totally believe that I'm doing better by attempting to educate myself first. I think working in a small business when I was in high school & through college didn't hurt, either, because I'm pretty good at the sales end of things, setting prices, bartering prices, managing money, it's all the office & legal sort of stuff that I have trouble with mostly because I'm terrible with the jargon (which, I'm not honestly sure if a business class would have necessarily helped, it may have just hurt my GPA in the end, lol). Though also, in my defense, I was a double major in two completely different fields for 4 of 5 years, there was very no time for any extra courses until my last year, & by then I just wanted to take courses I enjoyed my time in.

And that's really sad that people expect things to be handed to them at shows, you have to spend money to make money, people. And that cost is also why I'm going to wait a while to start in on craft shows, I have a lot of pinning down of what I want to do before I can make that step.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2012 06:52:38 AM by Painted Sparrow » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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« Reply #6 on: January 30, 2012 05:59:06 AM »

I'm a crafter. I do craft show for a living. I do around 40+/- shows per year. And of course I have insurance.

I want liability insurance in case someone trips and falls inside my booth.  I have $1,000,000 in liability coverage.
I want to be covered in case someone steals my register at a show.
I want coverage in case there's a major wind and my canopy flies and hits someone's car. (It has never happened since I got my canopy in 1987.)
I want coverage if my truck is broken into and I am robbed.
And since more promoters are requiring exhibitors to have insurance I am covered.
I am with RLI Insurance. They're a company who specializes in our business.
My premium? $279 per year. And I've been with them since 1990.

I'm so glad you posted your reasons for getting insurance, because I was reading the initial post and wasn't thinking too clearly about what it would actually cover. I've been taking notes here and there for a while as I go to craft shows and browse online crafted goods shops in case I ever decide to have my own crafting business. (Going to the shows and looking at them with a business perspective is really interesting, and I really wonder how much some of the booths there make.)

I'll definitely be getting insurance whenever I start things up! (Which will be quite a while, I'm sure)
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« Reply #7 on: January 30, 2012 07:07:12 AM »

That is really good to know, that RLI offers that kind of coverage!

I am not a business-crafter that has insurance... I'm the assistant of an insurance agent who sells a lot of commercial insurance policies.  Smiley I don't handle a lot of the commercial jargon (I deal with the personal-lines stuff like cars and houses) but I was going to project that you probably just want a basic BOP - it stands for business owners policy, and if it's just you and no employees, a little BOP can cover all sorts of stuff. I think they generally run around $500 annually, but that might depend on the state.
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Painted Sparrow
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« Reply #8 on: January 30, 2012 07:23:23 AM »

That is really good to know, that RLI offers that kind of coverage!

I am not a business-crafter that has insurance... I'm the assistant of an insurance agent who sells a lot of commercial insurance policies.  Smiley I don't handle a lot of the commercial jargon (I deal with the personal-lines stuff like cars and houses) but I was going to project that you probably just want a basic BOP - it stands for business owners policy, and if it's just you and no employees, a little BOP can cover all sorts of stuff. I think they generally run around $500 annually, but that might depend on the state.

Wonderful to know, thank you!
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Painted Sparrow
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« Reply #9 on: January 30, 2012 10:36:06 AM »

I'm a crafter. I do craft show for a living. I do around 40+/- shows per year. And of course I have insurance.

I want liability insurance in case someone trips and falls inside my booth.  I have $1,000,000 in liability coverage.
I want to be covered in case someone steals my register at a show.
I want coverage in case there's a major wind and my canopy flies and hits someone's car. (It has never happened since I got my canopy in 1987.)
I want coverage if my truck is broken into and I am robbed.
And since more promoters are requiring exhibitors to have insurance I am covered.
I am with RLI Insurance. They're a company who specializes in our business.
My premium? $279 per year. And I've been with them since 1990.

oK, this is going to sound totally dorky, but I want to hug you right now! I just finished talking with RLI & they will cover me, from theatre design to handicrafts, the full spectrum, for hundreds less than anywhere else & with just what I need for right now. You may have single-handedly just made officially getting my business set up financially possible for me in the next few months!

Oh, my gods, you are my hero for the month, seriously!
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