McBride for Business Blog

Liability As A Speaker

August 29, 2017 // R. Shawn McBride // No Comments »

R. Shawn McBride recently spoke about liability as a speaker.

Hey folks, Shawn here with you. We talk about liability as a speaker or an entertainer or really in a lot of our different businesses when we’re providing a service, so we have to think about what might be possible. Now, remember this is not legal advice for you, this is just general thinking about what might come up here. You want to talk to your attorney about your specific situation and make sure you have the right protection. But a lot of speakers reach out periodically because they are working at venues or events and people are asking them for liability waivers, and people go back and scratch their head, and they’re like, well, what liability could I have as a speaker? And I have to say speaker probably has one of the more safe professions as far as liability, but it doesn’t mean you’re insulated from liability, particularly here in the U.S., you know very litigious society. A lot of people like to sue each other for everything. And smart clients, companies that are hiring people as speakers or entertainers or for other service businesses, want to know that their people have liability protection because they don’t want problems being passed back there.

So what could go wrong as a speaker? Well, you could say something incorrect, libelous or slanderous, or you could use some improper material in your speech. Maybe third party rights to it might be an issue, you don’t have the proper intellectual property clearance. All of these things come back and bite the event that hires you. So they want to make sure you have some insurance in place to make sure if they get bit because of your activity, they’ve got a deep pocket to go after, i.e. the insurance company.

Maybe you jump off the stage and do something crazy during your event, again liability for the venue. Maybe not that likely to happen, but they want to transfer that liability and risk back to you. And maybe you make some incorrect statements and people rely on those statements, and there’s a possibility of liability there too. Some type of errors, an omissions-type claim, because you make improper statements. So a lot of different things that come up. I mean we’re living in a dangerous world. A lot of people are concerned about risk. And that’s why a lot of people are getting into these liability shifting regimes, which means basically that if you’re hosting an event, you want to shift as much liability off to other people as you can to keep your insurance rates low, keep your risk low, so that’s what were’ seeing as speakers. So general liability policy is probably a great idea.

Talk to your insurance broker, get the right stuff in place for you. And if you’re running speaking as a business or doing another service related business, and you want to think about these things in more depth, check out the McBride For Business Youtube channel. We’re bringing great content to you talking about these types of issues, things you can do to make your businesses better. The R. Shawn McBride public page on Facebook, where we are delivering videos and content to it regularly. Great stuff that’s relevant to your business. McBride For Business blog All these are great resources, R. Shawn McBride, I hope to hear from you, and talk to you soon!

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This posting is intended to be a tool to familiarize readers with some of the issues discussed herein.  This is not meant to be a comprehensive discussion and additional details should be discussed with your attorneys, accountants, consultants, bankers and other business planners who can provide advice for your circumstances. Each case is unique.  Past results do not guarantee future outcomes. This article should not be treated as legal advice to any person or entity. Scott Liddell.


About the Author

R. Shawn McBride is the Chief Innovation Officer at McBride For Business, LLC. His signature keynote, The 3 Laws of Empowerment, gives audiences an entertaining look at how they can prepare, plan and protect themselves. You can email R. Shawn McBride or (214) 418-0258.

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Posted In: Business, Risk, Speaking

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