From Santa Hollywood

Insight into Christmas, the Holidays and the World of Santa Claus

2012 Info on Insurance & Background Checks

posted by SantaTim On October - 8 - 2012 Comments Off on 2012 Info on Insurance & Background Checks

Keeping Santas and Mrs. Claus informed with an unbiased report on sources and costs for liability insurance and background checks.

Each year, there are changes to what types and kinds of insurance Santa and Mrs. Claus need when working.  This applies not only to work in the Mall and paid appearances at companies and home,  but also to any charitable work.

This is my eleventh year of sending out information on insurance and background checks.   I collect this information so that every Santa can have a full picture of what insurance and background programs are available.  All of it is posted on-line and as I get updates or changes, I make those to my web site.  http://www.realsantas.com/liabilityinsurance.htm

2013 CHANGES

There are not too many changes in the insurance offerings for 2013.  Last year some of the insurance companies began offering different levels of insurance, as some locations required Santa to have higher coverages.  So now we see $2-milion and $3-million policies.  This year other companies have also added that coverage.  Again, all of this information is at:  http://www.realsantas.com/liabilityinsurance.htm

WORKMAN’S COMP INSURANCE

A new twist this year, that only three or four Santas have contacted me about, is the requirement of having Workman’s Comprehensive Insurance, more commonly known as Workman’s comp.   Again, I am not an expert on insurance, but this is what I have learned.

Recently some shopping Centers and business venues have started requiring anyone working their premise to have Workman’s Comp coverage.  The require it for everyone they contract with or who provides services to their company.  And now, in a very small number of cases, this includes performers, artists, etc.

Basically the venues are trying to protect themselves against any losses that may arise should anyone working on their premise slip, fall or hurt themselves in the course of their performance.

Now, you may say to yourself, I already have liability insurance.  Well so doe the mall or venue.  Their liability insurance protects them should someone visiting the location get hurt.   Your liability policy does the same for you.  Liability policies do not protect the owner of the policy, that’s you, from your own injuries.  And a liability insurance policy does not protect the venue, should you get hurt.

I have added some information to my web site, but currently do not have any listing of sources for Workman’s Comp.   You will need to check with your business or homeowners agent, or check out one of the agencies elsewhere on the web.

BACKGROUND CHECKS

Today’s society is very cautions on who they entrust their children too.  With the every widening scope of the media, and the instant access that the world has, we constantly hear stories about bad situations.  And this causes concern with the venues and the families bring their children to see Santa.   So we take the positive approach of assuring the venues and families that Santa is a Safe person for the children to be with.

Background checks are currently offered by different companies and also through some of the associations. The cost is very minimal, anywhere less than $20 and upwards of $50, depending on the investigating agency and where you live.  One of the associations uses the FBI, which is the Gold Standard in background checks and it only costs $18.00.  By the way, anyone can request an FBI check by visiting their website: http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/criminal-history-summary-checks/submitting-a-criminal-history-summary-request-to-the-fbi

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In closing, I remind every Santa, whether working at paid jobs or doing volunteer work, to have a basic liability policy and a background check.  Yes, I know there are some of you out there who are saying to yourselves, “Why I have been a Santa for over 20-years and this is ridiculous!”   Well, the world has changed in the past twenty and thirty years.  And we need to keep up with the changes.

I do not offer insurance, nor background checks through my company.   The reason I do not offer these is  two fold.

First, if I did offer these services I would have to charge a fee to Santas to administer and manage the applications.  Now here is the “Catch-22,”  it is illegal to charge a fee to clients or even prospective clients for any services!   So, yes I could offer the insurance, but I would not be able to charge any fees.  Only the true non-profit trade associations are allowed to do that.

And Secondly, I really should not be handling your personal information or data.  That is something that really should be done by bonded professionals.  In fact, I am sometime concerned about the local Associations collecting or monitoring such data.

But I can, and do, require that any Santa or individual that I contract, have liability insurance and proof of background check.  That is why I searched out sources for these services.  It allows those who work with me to find what they need.

The information I collected lists the insurance companies and Santa associations that offer insurance and background checks.

CLICK HERE TO ACCESS INFORMATION ON INSURANCE AND BACKGROUND CHECK SOURCES

If after visiting my web site you know of other insurance companies or Santa Associations that offer similar services, I can add them to the list.  So feel free free to contact me.

I cannot tell you which insurance or back ground check is best for you.  Nor can I tell you which association or club is best for you.  Each insurance company is licensed and registered.  Each Santa association is a corporation and offers insurance from a licensed agency.  In fact, before they can even offer special insurance to their members, they too have to be insured.

You may want to check out some other blogs on this site about background checks and, “Protecting Santa Claus.”  You can read them at: blog.santahollywood.com

The first article covers information on why you need a background check.  The second covers liability insurance.  And the third gives some advice on limiting your liability to accidents.

I hope through the information on my special web page and the blogs, that you can be informed on your options for insurance and background checks.

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