With the holidays two different things come to mind for me, first of all you could have kids out of school coming in and spending time in your martial arts facility with some special holiday day camps or special programs. You want to make sure that you communicated to your insurance agent that you have a martial arts day camp or a week long camp going on while the kids are out of school and make sure that any new students are in your student count so that you’re covered.
Whenever you’re doing an event or any kind of special anything, it’s a good idea to give your agent a call just to make sure you’re covered. That’s unless you did it the previous year and it’s already included in there. It’s a great opportunity for you to get new members to your ongoing classes to advertise – ‘hey! The kids are out of school these two weeks, we’re offering these three or four day camps, let your kids come and spend the day with us and try out our programs or learn from other kids that are there.’ It’s a great opportunity for the school to make more revenue, but anytime you do something that’s special that’s with folks who are not your normal members, you want to make sure that you’ve communicated that to your insurance agent.
If you’re just going to have a Christmas party for your own members, this is not something that you need to worry about communicating to your agent, because those are your regular members coming in. If, however, you were planning to serve any kind of alcoholic beverages then you’d want to communicate with your agent and make sure you have coverage for host liquor on your policy.
As the weather starts to get bad in some parts of the country around winter time and you have snow and ice, you will want to make sure that’s been cleared off your sidewalks and out of your parking lot. Make the extra phone call to you landlord if necessary because you don’t want your members tripping and falling.
Most martial arts schools and studios are required to provide their landlord with a certificate of insurance, so that they’re responsible for their own members walking on those sidewalks. You may not be responsible for clearing the ice and snow yourself, which means it’s probably up to the landlord.
On a Commercial General Liability Policy tailored for your martial arts school or your martial arts studio, your coverage is much, much broader than what would be provided under Public Liability that your landlord may have for people coming and going from a facility. That’s just with the understanding that your landlord hasn’t required you, as part of signing the lease to provide proof of your insurance for him.
If you are new to the business and your landlord hasn’t required you to get the insurance, or you don’t have any insurance, the limit to that Public Liability Insurance is probably ‘slipping and falling on the premises’, ‘tripping over the door entry’, ‘a hole in the parking lot’, etc. It’s not going to have any coverage for you professionally as a martial artist in what you’re teaching your students.
It wouldn’t have any coverage for the personal injury that your students could claim, or any advertising injury that your students could claim, or any sexual abuse or molestation that your students can claim. It’s not a good idea at all to rely on the public liability insurance of a landlord.
Some General Liability policies will have host liquor included. This means you’re serving it at a party or someone’s bringing their own, but you’re not selling it. What you have to do is make sure your General Liability Policy includes host liquor. This is why it’s worth a phone call before the Christmas party to your insurance agent, if you haven’t already checked on that before, because it’s not a given that it will be on there.