Monday, December 3, 2007

How important is wedding insurance?

Today I read a really sad story on Philly.com. It was about a groom who died of a heart attack just five days before his wedding, and now the bride has filed a lawsuit against the hotel, because they have refused to return the $21,000 plus the couple paid for the wedding. The hotel says they have a binding contract, and death or no death, this is a business deal that must be honored (my words, not theirs). A favorite saying in this industry is "before the contract is signed it's negotiating, after it's signed it's begging." Clearly, this couple did not negotiate that contract to provide an out if an unimaginable situation like this one ever happened, and according to a local industry lawyer, a "Force Majeure" clause is not going to help you out in this situation either. Actually, I have very little faith in the Force Majeure clause based on past experience, but that's another post. There's a huge lesson to be learned from this bride's misfortune. Wedding insurance is a good bet. When I read an article today in which a major player in the industry said that this couple should have had wedding insurance, I was appalled. Where's the compassion? But honestly, they made a good point. It's time to take wedding insurance off the miscellaneous list, and put it right up there with venue, dress, etc. The cost is minimal and the security would mean not having to be embroiled in a battle with a hotel or vendor while you're trying to grieve. Remember venues and vendors not obligated to return your money because of a death. Chances are, five days before the wedding, food and flowers have been ordered, materials have been bought, and a lot of work has already been done, so if they return your money, the vendors and the venue are also suffering a loss. We would hope they would take that loss out of compassion, but as another saying goes: "better safe than sorry."

1 comment:

Eric said...

This is of course a very tough situation. As a pro, I understand business is business, but 'cmon where is the compassion.

I'd take a loss, and give back the deposit.