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Catering, Food Handling and Awareness *OnTopic* Forum to educate us on safe food handling. Not specifically for Catering or competition but overall health and keeping our families safe too.


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Old 08-26-2010, 01:40 PM   #1
bluetang
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Default Take out liability

Crazy question I'm sure, But when it's strickly take out, being that we have no control over what a customer does with the food after they leave with it, what's the liability if they say don't eat the food till many hours later and get sick? I'm sure it's on us, just wondering. Thanks
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Old 08-26-2010, 03:08 PM   #2
chambersuac
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I'm sure the law varies from state to state, but liability is always a good idea. What happens if the customer gets hurt while picking up food at your location - or, heaven forbid, actually gets sick from your food.

Our local festival requires all vendors to have liability insurance. At first, I thought that request was over the top. Now I understand.
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Old 08-26-2010, 03:11 PM   #3
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If you take strict HACCP precautions and document all your temps, times, etc. you're pretty safe. Not bullet-proof, but pretty safe. It's really hard to prove preparer liability in food-borne illness situations based on one case for the reasons you just identified.

Now.. if several people get sick, you're in hotter water.
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Old 08-26-2010, 03:22 PM   #4
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I don't know, but I have a half million dollar policy that only costs me something like $125 year. Pretty good investment, I think.

Where are you vending/serving/etc. If it is on your own property, it'd be risky NOT to have it - and somewhat risky even if you are serving at someone else's place. Again, just my limited knowledge based opinion.
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Old 08-26-2010, 07:44 PM   #5
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Thanks for starting this thread. We have been having this conversation lately. All of our gigs so far have been "private parties". But lately we have been asked to do two drop-offs. We'd like to steer away from onsite gigs unless and until we get setup with much better gear.

So, in the meantime, we need to know if we need some sort of liability ins for drop offs.
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Old 08-26-2010, 07:51 PM   #6
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Bottom line- If you are in business for yourself, no matter the type of business, you need liability insurance. I recommend at least $1M policy. This is just friendly site advice, I am not a professional anything.
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Old 08-30-2010, 12:15 PM   #7
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Agree with txchutte. A $1M liability policy is not all that expensive in the great scheme of things. Virtually every festival I go to requires a certificate of insurance. I've had at least two close calls with drunken fools walking between the booths and nearly leaning on the firebox of the offset! Just because you get sued does not make it your fault, but you still need to hire a lawyer to prove that it's not your fault.
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Old 08-30-2010, 12:53 PM   #8
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A big advantage of having a policy is that if you do get sued the insurance company breaks out their lawyers. Much better than you engaging an attorney and running up fees that you will be stuck with even if the case goes your way.
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Old 08-30-2010, 05:51 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PCDoctor_1979 View Post
Agree with txchutte. A $1M liability policy is not all that expensive in the great scheme of things. Virtually every festival I go to requires a certificate of insurance. I've had at least two close calls with drunken fools walking between the booths and nearly leaning on the firebox of the offset! Just because you get sued does not make it your fault, but you still need to hire a lawyer to prove that it's not your fault.
Yep, in a nutshell. There are always the suits that don't even relate.
We are not ready to make the plunge, but leaning. There is a really small restaurant location that has come and gone at least seven times in the last 3 years, no parking, micro kitchen. We were contemplating renting it as a commissary for catering and doing only take out on site. Insurance sounds like cheap insurance in the long run. Thanks
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Old 08-31-2010, 07:23 AM   #10
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Sounds like a nice arrangement for a catering HQ. Best of luck!
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Old 09-05-2010, 09:37 PM   #11
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I am not sure how that situation would work, but when I leave leftovers from a cook, I leave a paper telling how to properly handle them.
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