Taking out the relevant insurance cover is all about protecting your dance business against claims for damages or injuries caused to your customers, members of the public, staff or literally anyone else who directly or indirectly comes in to contact with your business. You may also wish to insure against being unable to conduct your business due to ill health or damage to your equipment.
Of course, if you undertake Dance Teaching in retirement, or as a minor sideline to your main employment, you may consider that only mandatory insurance is justified. But at the very least, you should seriously consider taking out Public Liability insurance as well.
As a Dance Teacher or Dance Instructor, your first and foremost concern might be that of injuries suffered by your pupils under your instruction.
It is probably fair to say that you might have suffered your own fair share of trips and falls, cuts and bruises, sprains and even broken bones during your years as a pupil, dancer and teacher. It could also be argued that such injuries are part and parcel of the world of dance. Much as that might be true, today's litigious culture promotes the opinion that when accidents happen, someone must be to blame for them. And there are lawyers now only too willing to take on such actions.
If you own your own dance studio, your duty of care to anyone who enters your premises is exactly the same as that of any business. Your risk assessment should accordingly take in to account every imaginable worst case scenario, from a pupil slipping on your newly polished sprung dance floor to an accompanying parent tripping over a trailing speaker cabinet lead whilst you are temporarily away showing a dance step to a dancer.
Equally, your hired premises might also have grounds to instigate claims against your dance business for any property damages they suffer that are attributable to your classes.
What Aspects of Insurance Cover Are Recommended for Dance Teachers?
Just as with any other business, it is important for Dance Teachers to understand that the only aspect of liability insurance you are required to take out by law is Employers Liability. This, of course, is applicable only if you employ anyone other than your direct family members to assist with the running of your dance business.
Any other insurance is optional rather than legally obligatory, although it is essential that you bear in mind that policies exist to protect and support your dance business financially if and when claims are brought against you.
UK Government policy [Employers’ Liability (Compulsory Insurance) Act 1969] dictates that you are breaking the law if, as an employer, you fail to take out Employers liability insurance. In fact, there are severe penalties in place for any business owners who are discovered to be lacking in this area. You might employ other Dance Teachers who supplement your services with different styles of dance or who simply co-opt in under your banner for your busy classes.
You are also wise not to overlook any other helpers who you might initially consider to be too casual or part time to warrant serious noteworthiness.
Do you utilise the help of anyone who is your DJ, takes money for classes, serves break-time refreshments, drives your minibus to dance competitions or assists you with costumes and make up? If the answer is yes, then you have a team of employees. Damages or accidents can befall any team member as they carry out your company business. Your insurance will protect you against any claims they may make.
Your Dance Teachers public liability insurance does much the same thing as your Employers liability, but rather than financially redressing claims by your own staff, it specifically takes care of claims made by anyone else who is non staff. Indemnity levels generally cover claims for damages and injuries made by your customers, members of the public, suppliers or any other third party.
You might consider additional insurance for your equipment if you own and use substantial amounts of it in your dance business. In the case of Dance Teachers, your business might own dancing apparatus, audio visual equipment, CDs and possibly thousands of pounds worth of costumes for your dance team.
Damages, loss or theft beyond your control could be financially devastating to your business and equipment insurance offers you the opportunity to recoup your costs if you suffer any such unforeseen misfortunes.