Volunteering This Summer

April 26, 2019


Volunteering This Summer

As the summer approaches, most schools will take their usual hiatus, leaving parents and children to that time-honored, summer tradition of mapping out temporary replacement activities. Camps, summer schools, sports leagues and activities of all kinds will be teeming with excited children (and relieved parents!).

If you are one of the millions of adults who will volunteer to assist with and/or supervise such an activity, or you have an older child residing with you who will do so, take time to review your personal liability insurance and the liability coverage for volunteers the organization carries. If you, your volunteering child, or a child under your supervision were to injure someone or damage property, those affected might seek compensation, and it’s possible you could be responsible for paying it.

Before signing up to volunteer, consider the following questions:

• Will the organization consider me responsible should I or someone under my supervision cause an injury or property damage?

Ask a coordinator or organization official for information regarding liability rules. Further, carefully review the language of any agreement you are asked to sign by the organization to ensure it doesn’t assign financial responsibility to you.

• If I could be responsible, is there insurance in place that will cover any costs for which I am liable?

Some organizations have a liability insurance policy that covers volunteers. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. The good news is that most homeowners and renters insurance policies will cover liability claims stemming from you or a member of your household’s volunteer activities. But be aware you probably have a deductible.

• If I get injured, is there insurance in place that covers my expenses?

Some organizations have a workers compensation policy that extends coverage to injured volunteers. Review your health and/or disability insurance policy for information regarding coverage for injuries incurred while volunteering.

Call us for more information 1-800-523-5526.

Reprinted with permission, The Mines Press Inc.