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While every couple does everything they can to ensure their wedding goes off without a hitch, the same can be said for driving your car or preventing illness. Since a car accident or an unexpected illness or injury is unpredictable and often incredibly expensive, we all logically opt to purchase insurance policies to protect those large investments. Weddings need not to be any different.
With the national average cost of a wedding hitting $28,000 when all is said and done, we professionals recommend couples give serious thought to wedding insurance.
While a brides’ knee jerk reaction to the idea of insuring her big day may be an emotional one, it is really no different than the contractual business relationships you forge with your venue and various vendors.
As a popular wedding venue, we have had a growing number of families inquire about wedding insurance and with still only one half of 1 percent of the 2 million weddings a year actually carrying a policy, we felt it was time to provide answers to the important wedding insurance questions.
What Does Wedding Insurance Generally Cover?
There are three main types of wedding insurance policies for couples and families to consider.
Liability – This category is required by some venues because the facility itself does not have their own. Couples will find this required at locations such as halls, beaches, parks, private estates, etc.
The Addison is a full- service, full-time events venue and has their own policy as well as requiring all vendors who operate on a property to carry their own policies, so for couples who plan to say their I DO’s here, general liability may not be necessary.
Cancellations / Postponement – This type of policy in most cases covers unforeseen eventualities that prevent the wedding from taking place. Occurrences such as a sudden illness for the bride, groom or immediate family, dangerous weather conditions that prevent more than 50% of your guests from attending or unexpected military call to duty. This type of policy will also usually cover damage to your wedding photos, video, gifts, attire and more.
For couples planning on saying “I do” at the Addison, this type of policy is a great idea. As wedding coordinators who oversee the planning of hundreds of weddings every year, see unforeseen obstacles come up in a handful of cases and it is always unfortunate to witness the lost investment for a couple piled on top of the obvious disappointment that comes with the eventualities the policy addresses. It is recommended to take out a policy based on the total budget of your wedding and the investment is minimal in comparison to the alternative. The average cost will be under 3% of your total wedding budget (i.e. $235 for a $25,000 policy with Wedsafe.)
Change of Heart – This type of policy has become difficult to find, as insurers experienced a large percentage of fraudulent claims. Insurers who do still offer this type of policy, usually only cover “Change of Heart” claims made 365 days or more before the day of the event and only cover financiers other than the bride and groom.
While no one wants to plan for an eventuality such as this, consideration of a Change of Heart policy can be incredibly difficulty and is really a decision to be made by the families of the couple that may be financing all or a portion of the wedding. In our experience, while this does not occur frequently by any means, on the few occasions when it has, depending on the family’s specific financial situation, it can be a devastating blow. It is best for the family to weigh their options for a Change of Heart policy carefully and tactfully.
At What Point in the Planning Process DO I Purchase Insurance?
While you are able to purchase wedding insurance as early as two years prior to the wedding date and are eligible to do so until 15 days prior to the big event, we suggest you apply for your policy as soon as you begin putting down deposits, so your investment is protected from the onset of the planning process. If you have already placed deposits, you can still purchase a policy and submit receipts to be covered for prior payments, so it is not too late!
What about a Destination Wedding?
Regardless of where you wedding will be held, you will want to purchase your policy for the state you reside in.
What about my Honeymoon?
When it comes to wedding insurance policies, you can opt to cover a series of events, rather than just the “big day.” In fact, in many cultures, a “wedding” encompasses a myriad of smaller events and rituals which all represent a portion of the overall investment, so when you purchase your policy, you will want to include everything related to the celebration of your marriage in the budgeted amount and information included in your application. We recommend you to be specific and prepare for every eventuality. This includes your honeymoon and travel accommodations that must be canceled or postponed and are covered in your policy.
Now that you have the facts, it’s time to consider your own wedding plans and decide what works best for you and your family. The Addison will always do their best to ensure your wedding planning experience is as well informed, positive and stress free as possible, so feel free to let your coordinator know if you are considering purchasing a wedding insurance policy and are looking for guidance.