Certificates of Insurance or COIs what is it and why do I need it?
Venues that you serve typically require a certificate of insurance to prove you to have general liability, auto liability and workers' compensation coverage for your food truck operations. If you rent an office or brink and mortar location for a restaurant or commissary will also require a certificate of insurance.
Venues do not want to become liable for risks under your control. Why should a venue become liable for you hurting someone with your food truck or for someone slipping on grease that came from your grill? Should an accident happen, everyone will point fingers and sue everyone to pay for injuries and/or damages. You need to have coverage for your own protections and to demonstrate to the venue that you are a responsible partner. From time to time, a venue may request to become an additional insured or certificate holder on your policy. This allows them to receive notice of cancellation of your coverage should you cancel for any reason as it puts them at risk, if you are serving with no coverage.
WHAT is a certificate of insurance?
A certificate of insurance is a one page standardized insurance document that demonstrates proof of coverage to interested parties. The interested party may also require that you add them as an additional insured to your coverage so that they are protected on your policy/policies should they be brought into lawsuit due to the course of your operations with them. An example of this is - You get a contract to serve at a local store's parking lot on a routine schedule. A customer of yours slips and falls while waiting in line to purchase your food. The client sues you and the store since it happened on their property. The store tenders the lawsuit back to you since they are added as an additional insured on your policy with respects to your contract with them.
WHEN do you need a certificate of insurance?
Certificates of insurance are usually required before an event or service commences. The client will likely ask for your certificate shortly after you sign the contract and definitely before you serve. If it's an ongoing contract you will need to show an updated certificate showing your renewal policy/policies effective dates so they know coverage will remain in force.
WHERE do you get a certificate of insurance?
Request certificates of insurance from your insurance provider or broker. In many cases, a venue will pre-define how much insurance coverage you need. If you receive such a request your agent will need to see the insurance requirements of the contract to be sure you satisfy them. The typical limits requested by most venues are $1,000,000 in general liability, $1,000,000 in auto liability and statutory required limits for workers' compensation/employers liability insurance. Once the certificate is prepared, your broker/agent will likely email you a copy of the certificate and mail an original to the certificate holder.
The Michael Drayton Insurance Agency issues Certificates of insurance same day even if we have to work after hours. Give us a call at 773-832-7798 for a free quote or fill this form for an agent to contact you.