Liability is not just about having insurance, it is about how you operate your business and deal with your clients and your suppliers. You have a responsibility to the public to be operating in a safe, hygienic and competent manner. This means everything from having a safe work area to using approved cosmetic products and not painting obviously ill people.
Having business liability insurance is to protect your and your family’s personal assets. If anything happens where you are considered liable for damages when conducting your business then your insurance would cover you. If you don’t have business liability insurance then you, personally, are liable to pay any damages.
You need to be operating in a businesslike and safe manner.
Your Work Space: Check how you are setting up to face paint. Do you have any potential tripping hazards? Is there anything that could fall or tip and injure someone? Do you have any hazardous materials out where they could be grabbed by a small child? Is your chair stable and not going to tip over with a child in it? If you use a tent or cover is it stabilized to prevent collapse and have you flagged the guide ropes?
Using Approved Cosmetic Products: This is a big issue that is often completely ignored by many getting into the business. Face painting, as it implies, means we are applying products to the skin, around the eyes, mouth and noses of children for the most part. There is a multitude of products designed specifically for this purpose that are safe when used according to manufacturer’s instructions. Using products meant for painting on canvas or paper is NOT responsible and could open you up to a liability suit if someone has a bad reaction to something – being labeled as Non-Toxic only means casual contact with skin will not cause a problem, it does NOT mean that it is safe to apply to the faces of children.
Painting Ill People: When you are painting in public you need to be aware of the condition of the people wanting to be painted. Painting obviously sick people is not acceptable as it can cause contamination of your tools and products, as well, your contact with them would enable you to pass along contagious illnesses. Also, some benign skin conditions can be aggravated by face painting and related products.
So, be responsible and professional, use proper products and take proper care as it is about YOUR protection not just your customers’.
© Shannon Fennell 2009