Your Business, Alcohol and Summer Fun

Maybe it’s served at your own company picnic or at an event you sponsor. Maybe it’s your core business as a winery or small-craft brewery. In any case, summer and alcohol go together as three-day weekends, warm weather and vacations combine to bring out the customers and the fun.

Now is the time to review your liquor liability coverage. There are two main types:

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Host Liquor: Provides protection for businesses against bodily injury or property damage lawsuits brought against you by parties injured as a result of an intoxicated guest.

Liquor Legal Liability: Provides coverage for bodily injury or property damage, for which you may become legally liable, as a result of contributing to a person becoming intoxicated.

Sounds fairly simple, right? You will need some type of coverage to ensure you, as well as your business, are clear of any liability in case of an incident. So, do you know
what type of coverage you will ultimately need?

The answer can be summed up by asking yourself: Are you in the business of serving, manufacturing, distributing, selling, or providing alcohol?

  • If the answer is “no” (for example, you are in the farming business) and providing alcohol is not part of your business, all you may need is Host Liquor coverage, which is typically included in your Commercial General Liability policy.
  • If the answer is “yes” (for example, you are hosting your event somewhere that requires you to obtain a liquor permit or you decide to charge a fee for the alcohol), you will need to purchase separate Liquor Legal Liability coverage.  In this case, the law states you are now considered to be in the business of serving, manufacturing, distributing, selling, or providing alcohol. This policy will help you stay clear of any liability.

Understandably, there is a fine and confusing line between host liquor and liquor legal liability coverage. To make certain you are properly covered, especially in today’s environment, make sure to speak to your agent prior to hosting or participating in an event with alcohol. Call 209-847-3065 for a policy review today.

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