Catering as a Solution to Social Distancing During the Holidays

// September 3, 2020
Reading Time: 3 minutes

Steaming buffet at holiday time

Bars and restaurants have been hit hard by social distancing guidelines. According to Yelp, the restaurant industry reflects the highest total business closures, with 26,160 closures in the U.S. — and 60% of these closures being permanent. This industry has also been challenged because limited social gathering protocols continued throughout the summer months, traditionally some of the busiest for bars and restaurants.

With the holiday season approaching, restaurants are turning to other methods to ensure their doors remain open. While catering historically made up a small fraction of restaurants’ annual revenues, more businesses have turned to off-premises catering options in order to continue operating. This, in turn, has led to lower overhead and operating costs, allowing them to remain in business despite challenging circumstances.

The influx of off-site catering operations has created a need for appropriate insurance coverage to protect staff and operations in homes, venues and public places. USLI caters to this coverage need by having a product specifically designed for off-premise operations.

USLI is able to consider risks such as private chefs, meal prep businesses, catering for small events and graduation parties, and many other off-premises catering operations. With the ability to consider general liability, liquor liability, inland marine and equipment breakdown, there is coverage available for all exposures bars and restaurants may face in this new operating capacity.

Catering operations can face unique loss exposures due to operating within others’ homes, transporting equipment from venue to venue and having cooking or serving stations set up around patrons. There is also a risk of damaging others’ property while operating or cooking within the venue or home. Consider this third-party property damage claim:

  • An insured was catering an event when a candle that was part of one of the centerpieces caught fire, igniting a tablecloth. Before the fire could be extinguished, it damaged the floor, and smoke damaged the building. This caused a third-party property damage loss of over $12,000.

Also consider the general liability claims that these operations can be subject to:

  • An insured was catering an event and accidentally spilled a bucket of ice on the floor. Before the ice could be cleaned up, one of the attendees at the party slipped and fell, breaking his hip. He sustained $10,000 in medical expenses.

Some of our Off-premises Catering product advantages include:

  • Can consider off-premises catering, caterers with their own halls and personal chefs
  • Blanket additional insured endorsement available
  • Liability limits up to $1 million/$2 million, with excess limits available
  • Hired and non-owned auto liability up to $1 million
  • Ability to write the liquor liability

With quotes available online, over the phone or through your USLI underwriter, you’ll find it easy to take advantage of our competitive minimum premiums and ease of business for all of your off-premises catering needs.


Maria Garvey HeadshotContact Maria Garvey
Assistant Vice President, Team Leader | 888-523-5545, ext. 2283

Jacob Dawson HeadshotWritten by Jacob Dawson
September 3, 2020