What Is Wedding Insurance?

bride and groom with Covid-19 masks
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Jonathan Borba / Unsplash

DEFINITION
Wedding insurance is a type of event insurance that protects you from losses in certain situations involving your wedding day. These include unforeseen events caused by damage or injury at a wedding, extreme weather, problems with the venue or vendors, and specific circumstances that may prevent your wedding from occurring.

Wedding insurance is a type of event insurance that protects you from losses in certain situations involving your wedding day. These include unforeseen events caused by damage or injury at a wedding, extreme weather, problems with the venue or vendors, and specific circumstances that may prevent your wedding from occurring.

You'll probably worry about protecting your investment when you've spent a lot of time and money preparing for your wedding day. Learn more about what wedding insurance is, what it covers, and how it works.

Definition and Example of Wedding Insurance

Like other types of event insurance, wedding insurance is designed to protect you from various potential losses associated with your big day. These events generally fall under liability coverage or cancellation coverage.

You might choose a policy that covers $25,000 for expenses related to inclement weather. Your policy will send you a check to cover the cost if you have to buy a tent because an unexpected storm rolls in before your wedding.

How Does Wedding Insurance Work?

You must choose your coverage limits and deductibles when you set up your wedding insurance policy. These will determine how much your policy costs, what events it will cover, and how much you'll have to pay out of pocket if something does indeed happen.

Types of Coverages

Some insurance companies offer customized packages that allow you to choose the amounts of coverage you want for specific items. Others include coverage based on a package deal.

Compare various options to get your best value for your needs.

Liability Coverage

Always ask the venue whether it covers event liability before you buy wedding insurance. This would provide critical protection for the day of the event. You may have to provide your own liability coverage if the venue doesn't carry it. Wedding event liability coverage may cover different things, such as bodily injury, property damage, or both.

You may also want to add host liquor liability insurance, depending on your choice of venue and the laws in your state. This covers alcohol-related incidents for which you may be held accountable. Some wedding insurers will automatically include this as part of their wedding liability insurance policy. Others will require that you add it for an additional cost.

Cancellation Coverage

Wedding cancellation coverage protects you against the cost of having to postpone or cancel your wedding due to several common factors. Most of these are covered by wedding cancellation insurance, so many of these circumstances will not be included if you opt to buy liability-only coverage, but they may be optional add-ons for a liability plan:

  • Vendor issues (revoked permits, bankruptcy, or failures)
  • People getting sick or being injured
  • Property damage that makes the venue unusable
  • Extreme weather
  • Military deployment
  • Dress damage or wedding attire coverage

Wedding insurance usually doesn't cover you if you suddenly find that you can't afford your wedding. Some wedding insurance cancellation policies may cover this circumstance if the lack of funds is due to an unexpected job loss after purchasing your cancellation policy. Each wedding insurance company views this risk differently, so ask about it if this is a concern for you.

Wedding insurance is typically for things that aren't within the couple's control. It doesn't cover cases of cold feet when one or both would-be spouses pull out of a wedding. Wedsure is an exception to this rule, but its limited "Change of Heart" coverage is only available as an option in the cancellation insurance package. It doesn't pay the bride or groom. This coverage applies only if the wedding is funded by a third party who was not involved in the decision to call it off. The policy also won't pay if the change of heart occurs less than 365 days before the first covered event.

Military deployment may or may not be covered by all wedding insurance providers, but it's usually mentioned if it is. USAA offers members of the military cancellation coverage that includes deployment.

Do I Need Wedding Insurance?

There's a consistent record of claims being paid for various cancellation issues. The reasons behind the claims tend to vary by year, but data suggests that cancellation insurance often comes in handy.

AON, a provider of wedding insurance under the WedSafe line, released the following data for claims made in 2019:

  • 23% for venue property damage
  • 18% for injury or accidents
  • 16% for vendor problems
  • 5% for loss, theft, or damage

A lot of time, effort, and planning go into a wedding day, and a wedding insurance company is familiar with all of the kinds of things that could go wrong. You protect yourself, your spouse, and your family from significant potential losses when you have a policy. The cost of wedding insurance is minimal compared to the wedding cost and what you have at risk. At the very least, it's worth discussing with your partner and anyone who's financially invested in the wedding.

Some wedding insurance policies cover liability for 24 hours, and some will only cover you until midnight or 2 a.m. on the day/evening of the event. If you have rehearsal dinners or other events planned, ask any insurer you're considering how many events they cover and what happens if your wedding runs past midnight.

Alternatives to Wedding Insurance

Wedding insurance isn't personal insurance, so your homeowners insurance won't automatically cover your big day. Many homeowners insurance providers may be able to offer you riders or event liability policies to help you get the right insurance coverage for your event.

Homeowners insurance covers your personal liability and personal property. Find out from your insurer what happens if gifts are stolen, or your grandmother's valuable necklace disappears off your neck during the wedding. These occurrences may be covered, but they may be subject to the deductible on your policy. Some credit cards may cover certain losses as well.

The Bottom Line

Ask key questions when you're looking at coverage options, and be sure to ask the venue what it covers. Check with your homeowners insurance provider to find out what it covers, or whether you can add a rider to your policy.

Have your parents contact their homeowners insurance company, too, to find out whether they have any coverage, especially if they're paying for some or all of the wedding or venue costs.

Compare coverages from different insurance companies to be sure you understand what they'll pay for and under what conditions.

Key Takeaways

  • Wedding insurance protects you against losses associated with your ceremony and reception. 
  • Coverage limits and deductibles apply, just as with most insurance policies.
  • Liability coverage protects you in the event that anyone is injured or their property is damaged. 
  • Cancellation coverage applies if you must postpone or cancel your nuptials, but not under all circumstances. The causing event must be out of your control. Military deployment may or may not be covered, depending on the insurer.


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