Monday, November 25, 2013
It’s really that simple, come to American Weathermakers, 335 Anthony Trail, Northbrook, IL on Monday, Dec. 9th from 9am-2pm, no appointment necessary, bring an unwrapped toy per or make a monetary donation and you’ll be photographed for a new corporate head shot to help decorate your LinkedIn, Twitter or other online presence (it’s OK for Match or J-Date too!) You’ll help a child have a happier holiday and you’ll get a nice, updated image to help your online presence! Have a question, please contact Shaun – firstname.lastname@example.org or Richard – email@example.com
Thursday, September 26, 2013
Many times here, I’m sharing recent work, however, with recent events that are forcing more photographers into the freelance market, I believe I needed to help others as well as assure current and future clients that my business is insured and thus so are they.
This will be the first of a multi-part series on doing business that will focus on insurance, legal, accounting practices for small businesses with a focus on photographers and other creatives. I’m getting the assistance of people in those categories to help explain the needs and issues behind the ideas shared.
Somedays being self-employed means that you own your own company, other days it means it owns you. There are many responsibilities of owning a business. Without force ranking them, one of the easiest for new photographers to forget is insurance. It can be expensive, but you MUST have it. It does a few things, it protects your business, your assets and your clients.
Many of the clients I visit, rent their space from another business or landlord. If I go into a space like this and for example, one of my studio lights causes electrical damage to their system, who is going to pay for that? For me, minus a deductible, my insurance company is going to cover that.
Many larger spaces require proof of insurance coverage before you can even work in their building or facility. Secondly, theft, if my gear were to be stolen, I’d be covered, able to replace that gear and continue to service my clients. It also allows me to rent equipment without putting down thousands of dollars in deposits, as my insurance covers rental gear.
Recently, I heard a story of a photographer who was cleaned out, all his gear stolen from his apartment, he had several weddings booked and was simply going to close down, despite having contracts for said services.
While it’s expensive in a way and you hate paying for things you may never need, it’s a must in everyone’s business, regardless of the type of business you run, it all comes down to risk management
I’m going to turn it over from here to my lawyer, who can address it from his legal perspective and what can happen to you and your business if you’re not covered. Speaking of legal, I’ll address soon the need for a solid contract and how it protects both you and your client.
Risk Management is essentially a two-step thought process in which one determines what potential risks are possible and then deciding how best to handle or manage the risk. For a photographer one constantly faces such decisions. Several of these decisions involve avoiding the potential for costly litigation and/or legal expenses.
When starting out as a business the photographer has to decide how to run their business, one of the first decisions a business owner face is, do I need insurance and if so what kind? One of the most important policies to obtain is a General Liability Policy covering the business for personal injury to others as well as property damage to others property as a result of some conduct by the business. I am just a small business and is this the cost of this type of insurance?
If a small business owner does not obtain a General Insurance Policy they are essentially making a risk management decision that they would be willing to risk everything they own to save the time and expense of obtaining a General Liability Insurance. Why does one need a General Liability Insurance Policy? Take for example of this would be an injury when a person trips over the photographer’s extension cord plugged in while doing a photo shoot. If a lawsuit was filed for injuries suffered in this accident the plaintiff (the injured party) would possibly be entitled to recover damages for the following: medical expenses, loss of earnings, future medical expenses, pain and suffering, future pain and suffering, loss of a normal life, future loss of a normal life, and disfigurement. These elements can quickly add up into the tens of thousands of dollars. Without the General Liability Policy the owner would be liable for any of the above elements of damage that could be proven to a jury. In addition the business owner would be incurring legal expenses throughout the pendency of the litigation, whereas an attorney is typically provided through the insurance policy. This could run many thousands of dollars. Further, legal claims can last several years and if there is no insurance “safety net” the owner will be having many sleepless nights wondering how they would be paying for everything.
Law Office of David Peterson, LLC
Monday, August 19, 2013
Earlier this month I finished up my third year of shooting the Music By the Lake series for George Williams College of Aurora University. After initially starting in 1951 and running for 17 years, the performances were resurrected in 2001. Working along the artists and staff at of GWC and AU is a great way of spending part of my Summer and with this years weather, it was even better!
This year we only shot four of the seven performances which while a change from the first two years, did allow me to spend the weekend with my wife on her birthday… as well as rehab my garage by refinishing the drywall, painting and installing new storage shelves, so it was a win-win all the way around!
See you next Summer in Williams Bay, WI!