This damage or loss may be physical, that is, an injury (you drop a piece of scenery on someone’s toe) or material (you had borrowed that piece of scenery from someone else and it’s now broken).
If someone from your vzw causes damage or loss to a third party, the ‘fault’ or ‘blame’ is automatically attributed to the vzw. Your organisation is then liable for the damage and costs, etc, that goes with that.
An insurance against Civil Liability covers the damages your organization may have to pay if anyone acting on behalf of your association causes damage or loss to a third party.
Individuals can also take out civil liability insurance in the form of ‘family insurance’ [familiale verzekering].
Required or recommended?
As a non-profit organisation, you are obliged to have at least civil liability insurance for your volunteers.
But you can insure more people or activities if you want, e.g. dancers, audience, …
Check the policy
If you intend to take out Civil Liability insurance, you should pay attention to the following:
- Are all the activities of your organisation covered, e.g. the annual barbecue as well as the dance lessons? And what out the events you organise?
- Who is covered? The association, members, directors and/or trustees, volunteers, people who are involved via the KVR, etc?
- Does the insurance cover both material damage and injury?
Normally, civil liability insurance for associations only covers people in the association who are subordinate in the organisation, such as volunteers, participants and members. Self-employed people are not usually covered and must have their own Civil Liability insurance.
Do you run a canteen or other infrastructure?
If your organisation runs a dance studio or canteen, then you can take out an extra Civil Liability for the exploitation [Burgerlijke Aansprakelijkheid Uitbater] insurance. This covers the damage or injury that people can suffer as a consequence of faults in the fabric of your building or terrain, for example, if someone trips over a loose paving stone.