What Is Wedding Insurance (and What Does It Cover)?

7 Things That Wedding Insurance Will Cover

wedding insurance man flying through air with wedding cake
•••  Aksakalko / IStock

What is Wedding Insurance

Wedding insurance is a type of event insurance that protects you from losses that may happen due to various factors, such as:

  • unforeseen events causing damage or injury at a wedding
  • external event(s) beyond your control that may prevent your wedding from occurring
  • extreme weather
  • problems with the venue or vendors

What Are the Different Kinds of Wedding Insurance?

There are two types of wedding insurance:

  • Liability Coverage
  • Cancellation Coverage 

You can also purchase the two in a bundle that will cover both. Before buying wedding insurance always ask the venue if they cover event liability. Wedding event liability coverage may cover different things, for example, bodily injury and property damage.

Depending on your choice of venue and the laws in your state, you may also need to add Host Liquor Liability Insurance which covers alcohol-related incidents you may be held accountable for.  Some wedding insurers will include this as part of their wedding liability insurance policy automatically, others will require you to add it for a cost. 

7 Things Wedding Insurance Can Cover

Depending on whether you choose liability-only coverage or cancellation coverage, wedding insurance typically offers options for these seven common risks. Most of these are covered by wedding cancellation insurance, so if you opt to buy wedding liability-only coverage, many of these will not be included, instead, they are considered optional coverages in a cancellation plan.

  1. Vendor Issues (permits being revoked, bankruptcy or failures)
  2. People getting sick or injured
  3. Property damage
  4. Extreme weather
  5. Military deployment
  6. Lost or stolen gifts
  7. Dress damage or wedding attire coverage

Ask About Special Limitations In the Policy for Coverages

Every wedding insurance policy is different and will have different policy limits or special features based on the insurance company you purchase coverage from. The above list is a starters guide to commonly covered things on wedding insurance for you to ask about.

Military deployment, for example, may or may not be covered by all wedding insurance, but is usually mentioned when it is. For example, USAA offers cancellation coverage for members of the military that includes deployment.

Some insurance companies offer customized packages where you can choose the amounts of coverage for certain items, and others include coverage based on a package deal. When you look for the best wedding coverage, compare the various options to get your best value.

What's Not Covered by Wedding Insurance?

Wedding insurance does not usually cover a lack of funds, or if you suddenly can't afford your wedding. However, some wedding insurance cancellation policies may cover this if the lack of funds is due to an unexpected job loss that happens after you purchased your cancellation policy, and you go on unemployment. Each wedding insurance company views this differently, be sure and ask about it if it is a concern.

Wedding insurance doesn't cover when people get cold feet or pull out of a wedding. Wedding insurance is typically for things that are not within the couple's control putting their event at risk.

One company, Wedsure is the exception to the rule. They are the only company that provides coverage for change of heart, however, it is only available as an option in the cancellation insurance package and would not payout to the bride or groom. Instead this coverage only applies if the wedding is funded by a third party who was not involved in the decision to call off the wedding.

Change of Heart Coverage

Although Change of Heart is not covered by wedding insurance, there is one company that provides coverage for Change of Heart under certain conditions when there is an innocent third party financier who is paying for the wedding.

Will Home Insurance Cover Your Wedding?

Wedding insurance is not personal insurance, so your home insurance is not intended to cover a wedding. However, many home insurance companies may be able to offer you riders or event liability policies and help you get the right insurance coverage for your event.

Home insurance covers your personal liability and personal property. Find out from your home insurance what happens if gifts get stolen, or if your grandmother's necklace disappears off your neck during the wedding. These things may be covered, but subject to the deductible.

Should You Get Wedding Insurance?

A lot of time, effort and planning go into the wedding day. A wedding insurance company is familiar with all kinds of things that go wrong and by having a policy the insurance company will have your back if something goes wrong and it's covered. The cost of wedding insurance is minimal compared to the cost of the wedding and what is at risk.

How Much Does Wedding Insurance Cost?

Although pricing for wedding insurance varies, wedding event liability coverage could start on average at around $175 for $1 million of coverage. Depending on the various options and packages you could be looking at between $200-$550. 

Example of Claims Paid by Wedding Insurance

There is a consistent record of claims being paid for various cancellation issues, and although year by year the reasons for what caused the most claims vary, the data suggests that cancellation insurance does come in handy in many circumstances when things happen beyond our control.

In a study by Travelers, that spanned from 2011-2015, released in 2016, 30% of wedding insurance claims were due to vendor issues.

AON, a provider of wedding insurance under the WedSafe product, released some of their data from wedding insurance claims paid, and in 2017 they paid 40 percent wedding insurance claims for postponement or cancellation. 

Compared to AON's 2019 claims paid data below, the claims paid were different, but you can see that wedding insurance does actually come into play often enough even though the reasons for payout will change due to circumstance and weather year to year.

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

Today in 2020, the data will be very different as we see the impact of claims due to the Coronavirus. People who purchased insurance prior to the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) being a known event or risk may be able to claim in various circumstances if they purchased Wedding Cancellation insurance.

When Should You Get Wedding Insurance?

You should look into wedding insurance as soon as you are planning your wedding and have an idea of the venue. Sometimes the venue you select, whether you are serving your own alcohol and other aspects of your day will dictate what kind of insurance you need. 

Check How Many Events Are Covered, and Until What Time

Some wedding insurance policies cover liability for 24 hours, and others only cover you until midnight or 2am. If you have rehearsal dinners or other events, ask how many events they cover, and what happens if your wedding runs past midnight. Some insurers require you to purchase several days of coverage.

What to Check Before Buying Wedding Insurance

  • Ask the venue what they cover.
  • Ask your home insurance provider what they cover or if they can add a rider to your home policy.
  • If applicable, have your parents contact their home insurance company to ask if they have any coverage, especially if they are the ones paying for the wedding or the venue. 
  • Compare the coverages from different wedding insurance companies to understand what they cover and under what conditions. Then you can make a decision.

You may find out that you can have some coverage on your home insurance. For example, you can insure your engagement rings on a rider on your home policy. Some companies even offer engagement ring insurance as a stand-alone.

Bottom Line

Wedding insurance can help prevent you from sustaining financial losses if something goes wrong, property is damaged, or people get injured at your wedding. Makign sure to ask enough questions, and carefully selecting the coverage you need will not only save you money but make sure you are protected when something goes wrong.

It all depends on the different insurance companies and their policy wordings, so asking all your important questions will help make sure that you:

  • Don't over-insure yourself
  • Don't double insure yourself
  • Buy insurance that will be appropriate for your big day to protect the things that matter

Article Sources

  1. Insurance Information Institute. "Special Event Insurance." Accessed March 17, 2020. 

  2. Insurance Information Institute. "Liability Insurance." Accessed March 29, 2020.

  3. FindLaw. "Social Host Liability." Accessed March 29, 2020.

  4. Wedsafe. "Wedsafe." Accessed March 17, 2020. 

  5. Progressive Wedding & Event by Event Helper. "Frequently Asked Questions." Accessed March 29, 2020.

  6. Wedsure. "Tons of Optional Coverages for Your Wedding." Accessed March 29, 2020.

  7. USAA. "Frequently Asked Questions." Accessed March 19, 2020. 

  8. Markel. "Special Event Cancelation Insurance." Page 4. Accessed March 20, 2020.

  9. Wedsure. "Coverages A to Z." Accessed March 17, 2020. 

  10. Property Casualty 360. "Top Four Wedding Insurance Claims of 2017

    ." Accessed March 29, 2020.

  11. Wedsafe. "Bliss Busters: Top Wedding Insurance Claims of 2019 from WedSafe." Accessed March 29, 2020.

  12. NAIC. "Coronavirus Resource Center." Accessed March 20, 2020.