Summer Sports Camps and Insurance
By Matt Komac, MSGIA Assistant Director for Property & Liability Pool Operations
As summer approaches, many of our members receive requests for the use of their facilities for summer sports camps. These camps may be sponsored by the member school district’s coaches and/or staff, or they may be presented by outside organizations. If the camp is not being sponsored or presented by the school district, or if the proceeds are going to the coach rather than the school district, then MSGIA strongly recommends that the district require the sponsors/coaches to purchase and provide proof of a liability insurance policy covering the event. The liability policy should provide a minimum limit of $1,000,000 per occurrence and a Certificate of Insurance naming the school district as an additional insured on the policy. If during the event, one of the participants or spectators at the camp is injured on the school district’s property, the event insurance policy is there to address negligence on the part of the camp organizer or the district and to protect them against damages that may be sought. If a camp is a school-sponsored event and the proceeds go back to the school, then the coaches would be protected under the district’s general liability policy; however, please know that you can still choose to transfer that risk to a special events policy.
Insurance policies for camps are widely available and can most likely be obtained from the camp sponsor’s personal insurance agent. For those districts that are currently members of the MSGIA’s Property & Liability Pool, you also have access to a special-events insurance program through Alliant Specialty Insurance Group. The rates are very competitive for the sponsors, and, what’s more, one only needs to complete a simple application to participate. As an example, a three-day volleyball camp with under 100 participants would cost the sponsor approximately $97.00 for a $1,000,000 liability limit, and under these terms, the school district would automatically be named as an additional insured. The actual rate depends on multiple factors, including the type of activity, number of participants, and duration of the camp.
Another issue that comes up frequently relates to workers’ compensation insurance coverage for these events. If the event is sponsored by the school district and the district employees or volunteers participating are acting at the discretion of the district, the school district’s workers’ compensation insurance provides coverage. If the camp is being run by an independent group or a coach outside of their scope of employment with the school district, then the school’s workers’ compensation coverage does not extend to them.
Requiring the event sponsors to have the appropriate liability coverage in place greatly minimizes the risk to the school district in the event there is an accident. For more information about the Alliant Specialty Insurance Group’s special events insurance program, contact Matt Komac, at 877-667-7392. Return to newsletter