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 Post subject: The Business Side of Magic: Insurance
PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2007 3:17 pm 
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born to perform.

Joined: 10 Nov 2004
Posts: 890
Here is another thing I was wondering today, especially with some many kids doing birthday parties.

How many of you have insurance? Let's face it, things can go wrong, and when they do -- in today's society -- it is easy to get yourself sued.

So how many of you have insurance in place? Since our daughter is the only one performing I am checking on getting insurance for her. So far she hasn't utilized it, but it is a mistake not to have it, so we are going to remedy that as soon as possible. Also, she can then incorporate her balloon twisting, which I won't allow her to do now without insurance. (Big disappointment to her)

This question really does go out to the kids as well. I want them to think of the consequences as well when performing. I am sure most the adult magicians here already have insurance -- but the youth magicians need to seriously consider it. You may not be allowed to be sued under state law, but your parents can be!

Just some food for thought before booking that next show, espcially if handing out balloons!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2007 3:33 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 22 Mar 2005
Posts: 292
Location: CT
I work for a Magic Troupe and am covered under their personal liability insurance. We also use 4 page contracts that must be signed before even a birthday show is done.
Its sad buts its the only way to do things these days.

Cheers,
Adam


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2007 3:35 pm 
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Emperor Penguin

Joined: 22 Mar 2004
Posts: 7253
Location: Texas
I know this deals with kids, but I will add my two cents.

I do have liability insurnce- performing escapes and stunts can do that.

When I performed kids shows (not very long), I didnt have insurance, but If any thing would have gone serioudly wrong, ie- injury of a kid, it would come in handy. As now and days people with sue your [edited] over anything.

I know you can get some insurance through IBM, maybe SAM too.
I go through both IBM and a private company.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2007 3:38 pm 
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born to perform.

Joined: 10 Nov 2004
Posts: 890
I was sure the professional adult magicians of the forum would all be insured. As you stated, you cannot afford not to be.

We are looking into the SAM insurance. It is just a matter as to whether they will insure the youths as well. I'm looking forward into getting an answer! I will let you all know the result when I find out for any SYM members out there.

Adam, as to the contract we haven't bothered. Since they are technically hiring our daughter and she is a minor -- any contract would be null and void in our state because she is underage. Therefore she always sends out a confirmation letter detailing the specifics. It is non-binding, but she has never had a problem.

Thanks for your response!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2007 4:22 pm 
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born to perform.

Joined: 23 Jul 2004
Posts: 2440
Location: NJ
Kristenl, I am in the same position as your daughter. My parents would not allow me to perform without having insurance because if anything goes wrong i am not responsible....They are. Plus, they want me to konw how to fully run a business. I need to be able to protect myself in case i need to.

I have heard some really annoying sueings. ONe time a clown was twisting a balloon and the unthinkable happened. THE BALLOON POPPED!!!! somebody happened to be walking behind him at that exact second. The person claimed that the clown did it on purpose so he sued the clown.

I use the clowns of the US insurance company. It was originally designed for clowns (which i am not) but they allow jugglers, magicians and just about any time of performer.

http://www.clownsoftheus.com/

There is only only 2 downsides. One is no animals allowed. As of now i don't use animals but i would soon like to get a dwarf rabbit. So it does not concern me to much. And the other is no fire allowed, which i also do not use but would like to eventually. So for now this insurance is fine for me, but in the future i am going to have to pick a new plan.

Ben Winter


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2007 4:40 pm 
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born to perform.

Joined: 10 Nov 2004
Posts: 890
Thank you for the response! I have heard of that policy before and I will be sure to check on that one also.

If I may ask, as a youth performer, are the rates afforable? How much insurance coverage do they provide? Thanks again for your input!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2007 5:23 pm 
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born to perform.

Joined: 23 Jul 2004
Posts: 2440
Location: NJ
kristenl wrote:
Thank you for the response! I have heard of that policy before and I will be sure to check on that one also.

If I may ask, as a youth performer, are the rates afforable? How much insurance coverage do they provide? Thanks again for your input!


Well IMO it is quite affordable. It is $190 per year which for my is 2 shows. 2 shows of payment is SO Worth it to make sure that i am fully covered for 2 years. As the old saying goes, "It's better to be safe then sorry." I have never had to use my insurance but if i ever need to I will be glad that i have it.

I originally bought it because my mentor told me that it's needed. He said that even if i only breaking even at the end of the year because of the insurance it is still better to have it because i will still be gaining experience for the future when i will actually need the money. Now adays magic is just a hobby and if i can make some money from it then even better!

Here is what they cover....
$3,000,000 Each Occurrence (bodily injury & property damage to others)
$4,000,000 General Aggregate (the most the policy will pay out during the policy year)
$3,000,000 Personal & Advertising Injury (hurting someone's feelings)
$4,000,000 Products & Completed Operations Aggregate (the most the policy will pay out during the policy year)
$50,000 Fire Damage (to rented premises)
$5,000 Medical Expense (emergency medical and others at the time of injury)

Ben Winter
ps. When i was choosing which to get i also looked at the IBM insurance, however after some research this seemed to be the better one.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2007 5:28 pm 
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born to perform.

Joined: 10 Nov 2004
Posts: 890
I actually visited their website and got the information there, but I appreciate your having posted it. I should have looked before I asked -- my apologies!

Thanks again!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 9:02 am 
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Team Penguin

Joined: 04 Feb 2005
Posts: 1854
Location: Georgia
Insurance is a great idea but I don't think it's completely necessary unless you are thriving on shows. If you do a couple a month, then I wouldn't worry about it...however if you are like Ken Scott and have an average of 380 kidshows per year...or like Terry Evanswood (who runs an illusion show out of his own theatre), then you might want to consider having insurance...

My average is around 200 shows per year...this is my profession...and I don't have insurance...it's not that I don't want it, or haven't considered purchasing it...I just don't see the complete need for it. I have thought out the problems and things that could go wrong in my show....and I don't feel the need to buy insurance.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 10:54 am 
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born to perform.

Joined: 20 Apr 2004
Posts: 2592
Location: Herts, England
£10,000,000/$20,000,000 public liability insurance. For both my tennis coaching, and magic.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 09, 2007 2:54 pm 
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born to perform.

Joined: 10 Nov 2004
Posts: 890
As promised, I am following up with an answer on the SAM insurance. I spoke with the actual insurance agent that writes the policy and he stated that he cannot write the policy. Also, he did tell me that balloon twisting is not covered. For example, you blow up a balloon, hand it to a child, that child puts it in his mouth and chokes -- you are NOT covered! That is important to know!

Sounds like we are going to have to keep looking for an insurance policy. I have a call now into Clowns of the US to check to see if they will issue a policy.


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