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Rules to live by – kit and caboodle

Insurance isn’t something anyone really thinks about – until the worst happens. Like your kit going walkabout…

You know the scenario: you get a call asking if you’re free, like, NOW, for a job. With a bag pre-packed and ready to go at any moment for this choice opportunities, the last thing you want to be worrying about is admin like insurance. But the further afield you go, the bigger the risks.

We spoke again with Gary Crowder, account director of Just Hair & Beauty Insurance, who works to find the right policies for your circumstances, about covering the essentials – namely, your kit.

“Your tools have been garnered over the years and should be correctly covered. To that end, a record of your kit should be accessible, preferably electronically, which should include both an inventory and photographic record. This should dovetail any and all forms of supporting documentation (invoices/ receipts); failure to provide proof of ownership will fall on deaf ears with insurers should a claim be made. Valuing one’s kit is an time-consuming task, but one that should be given careful thought. Don’t forget that a full brush bag alone could be as much as £1,000! Food for thought, I’m sure you’ll agree.

Keeping an eye on your tools is not always a possibility, especially if you’re stuck on a train with standing room only, or sat on a plane with no clear sight of your luggage. Equally, production companies transporting your bags with/without you but who refrain from taking responsibility for loss or damage is a problem, so there must be awareness and understanding from your insurer in these unique circumstances.

It’s a question that will crop up, so it always pays to be prepared. We are aware that the BBC requires photographic documentation and a packing list for any and all artists, thus avoiding disputes whilst working behind the scenes on its premises.

In light of the above, I suggest an Insurance Checklist to ensure you can obtain cover that’s fit for purpose. Pointers to help:

  • Are all business activities & locations insured?
  • Will the policy cover me for overseas and for how long; does this extend to include kit?
  • Check inner limits (kit)
  • What is the claim procedure and your responsibilities?

Finally, arrange a stand-alone annual travel policy to cover both holiday and business trips, for any unexpected medical expenses and cancellation cover. Annual protection is definitely more economical than insuring individual trips.”