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Personal & Private Chef Insurance: Liability, Cost, & More

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Good chefs will find themselves cooking at Michelin rated restaurants or hotels and earn $67,000 up to $100,000 a month. However, many start working for more than 8 hours a day in very hectic schedules.

And so, those who are very familiar with the culinary industry know that landing a job in fancy hotels and restaurants isn’t the real gold mine.

Private chefs and personal chefs experience the real deal. They earn twice more than what chefs in renowned restaurants and hotels earn. And their work is a lot simpler, because there are fewer patrons to serve.

Nonetheless, private and personal chefs still face risks. As most work with high profile clients, facing overwhelming responsibilities is one aspect of the job. And if something really goes wrong, things won’t just end with getting fired.

Personal and private chef Insurance can help mitigate the problems private and personal chefs face during the course of their career. Today’s discussion aims to provide insights about this.


Also read:

Private and Personal Chef Liability Insurance

Many think that all personal and private chefs do is cook. This is wrong and almost similar to saying that there are no stars in daytime as they’re not visible. In truth, personal and private chefs must not only excel in cooking but must do well in other tasks as well. Here are some integral duties and responsibilities they need to perform:

  • Ensure that the food isn’t only delicious but also safe and beneficial for the clients

  • Prepare a weekly or monthly meal plan that compliments with the client’s nutritional needs

  • Craft a daily menu

  • Conduct kitchen inspections to ensure that it’s safe and free of contaminants

  • Be the one responsible with sourcing the food to be cooked for the clients

  • Attend to the invoices of food vendors and sellers

  • Observe proper food storage and handling

Committing a mistake and injuring their clients is what personal and private chefs dread the most. These clients are not the usual people one may meet on the streets. Personal and private chefs work with business tycoons, celebrities, and other high profile individuals who care a lot about their health and who have the power and resources to file a lawsuit even for the slightest mistake.

Personal and private chefs can easily commit mistakes in food preparation. Common faults in food preparation are:

  • Incorrectly thawing frozen food

  • Cooking food at incorrect temperatures

  • Cross contamination

  • Failure to evaluate the quality of ingredients

  • Failure to wash cooking equipment properly

  • Using one same ladle or spoon to stir and taste food

Food preparation errors result in foodborne illnesses. In connection, clients can sue personal and private chefs if they become sick. On average, settlement for personal injuries will cost $137,000.

It’s easy to pay for settlement and legal fees for a personal injury if there’s personal chef insurance and private chef insurance with general liability coverage. A basic general liability coverage offers $1 million up to $2 million for foodborne illness personal injury lawsuits. However, personal and private chefs can claim more if they go for a general liability coverage with expensive premiums.

The table below shows the most common foodborne illnesses in the United States according to the FDA ( Food and Drug Safety Administration ) as well as their personal injury compensation cost, which chef insurance will pay for:

Foodborne Illness Possible Injuries Caused Estimated Settlement Cost
Campylobacter Abdominal pain, bloody diarrhea, fever, and nausea $1.4 million
Hepatitis A Jaundice, abnormal urine, malaise, loss of appetite, and live failure $2.2 million
Listeria Miscarriage, fatigue, confusion, convulsion, stiff neck, and disorientation $833,000
Salmonellosis Death, fever, abdominal cramps, and diarrhea $10.4 million
Norovirus Nausea, diarrhea, andstomach cramps $3.3 million
E.coli
Loss of appetite, nausea, low fever, stomachache, and fatigue $650,000

Aside from the contraction of foodborne illness due to poor food preparation, clients can also file a lawsuit against personal or private chefs because of food allergies. Food allergy lawsuits can have a settlement cost of more than $1 million if the allergic reaction is severe. The lawyer establishes fault by reason of negligence, failure to warn, and false labeling.

General liability coverage in insurance for chefs can sometimes cover food allergy lawsuits. However, a policy that will surely provide protection is professional liability insurance. Professional liability provides $1 million minimum coverage, and it will take care of legal costs and settlement fees.

No clients will work with personal and private chefs without insurance. And so, chefs need to have general liability and professional liability coverages. In most cases, the employment contract will require chefs to get these.

But here’s the thing, if general liability and professional liability of personal and private chefs don’t have a certificate of insurance (COI), then getting insured is useless. Saying to clients that insurance is ready won’t make the cut. Clients are smart and they will look for a certificate of insurance as proof. With that said, personal and private chefs must work with carriers that offer COI in their general liability and professional liability coverages. Good examples are Next and CoverWallet . We suggested these companies as they allow the policy holder to get an electronic COI without filing any forms.

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Can Chefs Use Insurance to Cover Breach of Contract Lawsuits?

Clients pay a lot for the service of personal and private chefs. And since they pay a lot, they also expect not only good but unparalleled performance. Personal and private chefs live to deliver this. However, due to how hectic work is or how high the clients’ standards are, it may sometimes seem like personal and private chefs are not fulfilling their duties and responsibilities. 

The failure to fulfill one's duties and responsibilities might result in legal issues such as breach of contract or fraud.

Without insurance, a breach of contract lawsuit can be very painful. Attorney fees start at $400 up to more than $1,000 an hour. Testimonies also require payment and most, who are willing to give their insights about the case, will ask for $597 or $748 for their time. 

Carriers allow personal and private chefs to use their professional liability insurance to cover breach of contract lawsuits. These policies will provide the payment for the lawyer, the witnesses, and the settlement to the plaintiff if ever the lawsuit won’t end well. 

If not breach of contract, some clients might sue personal and private chefs for fraud. This might be because they embezzled the funds allocated for food or lied about their credentials to get the job. Whichever of the two might be the reason, the question is does professional liability insurance cover fraud lawsuits?

No, professional liability does not cover fraud lawsuits. To get protection, chefs must get fraud insurance coverage. This is something that’s hard to find in chef insurance carriers. As far as we know, AON is the only one offering this. 

Personal Car Insurance or Commercial Auto Insurance for Private and Personal Chefs?

Personal auto insurance accounts for some risks regarding the use of a car for work purposes. And so, chefs can decide to get this policy for their vehicles used for work. However, carriers incur additional costs for premiums in this case. Another problem with covering a car used for work with personal auto insurance is that the carriers are more likely to cancel the policy or deny a claim.

It might be better for private and personal chefs to insure their cars with commercial auto insurance. Unlike personal auto insurance that provides very limited coverage, commercial auto gives a minimum of $500,000 up to $1 million to the policy holder. 

The gist is this, insurance companies are more likely not to honor a claim for cars constantly used for work if the owner uses personal auto coverage. On the other hand, commercial auto insurance is the exact opposite. And so, we say that it’s the best car insurance for chefs.

What Insurance Will Provide Coverage if Private and Personal Chefs Lose Their Job?

Losing a job is painful, problematic, and the least that one wants to happen. There are a lot of reasons for this such as wrongful termination and getting sick. 

Losing income for an indefinite period of time isn’t a good experience. Having some savings on the bank will make things a little easier but the situation is problematic nonetheless. And so, it’s best for personal and private chefs to have a policy that will provide money if they become temporarily jobless. 

Personal and private chefs can get covered with business interruption insurance. However,  getting this is only possible if chefs register their trade as a sole proprietorship or any other type of business. Business interruption provides coverage for lost income up until the time a business is up and running once again. 

Personal and private chefs who don’t want to register themselves as a business entity can’t apply for business interruption insurance. However, this doesn’t mean that getting insured is impossible as there’s another available coverage. Unemployment insurance is the second option.

Unemployment insurance provides money during the period personal and private chefs are not employed. The amount they will receive isn’t 100% equal to their salary. Nonetheless, it’s great to have funds that will pay for loans or rent and other associated bills. Also, it’s important to note that  unemployment insurance will only continue to supply money for at least 5-8 months. 

In addition, many unemployment insurance companies will reject a claim if the personal or private chef is becomes jobless due to a proven misconduct. But even so, this isn’t the case for all. And so,  we suggest comparing personal chef insurance and private chef insurance quotes which includes or excludes involuntary termination. Start by clicking the “Get Quotes” button on this page.  

Business Insurance for Personal and Private Chefs

Carriers offer insurance for chefs as a business owners policy. A business owner's policy usually bundles commercial property and general liability coverage together. However, it’s actual features will vary depending on the carrier offering it. The table below outlines the features of private and personal chef business insurance from different carriers. 

Carrier Features of BOP
Next
General liability+commercial property with optional coverages such as commercial auto and workers comp coverage
State Farm  General liability+commercial property+business interruption+equipment breakdown coverage+employee dishonesty coverage with optional workers comp, umbrella, and commercial auto coverages

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Private and Personal Chef Insurance Cost

  • Private and personal chef liability insurance cost is $76 a month or $912 a year provided that the policyholder only gets a $1 million general liability coverage

Pricing that we provided here are just estimates based on the common rates most private and personal chefs pay. Private and personal chef insurance cost is determined by several factors such as:

Location

The state your private chef business is located in could influence the cost of your insurance cover. Some states require a set amount of coverage based on profession. For example, the limit could be $500 per year, meaning you must buy a policy that costs not lower than that amount. Check the insurance policies that apply in your state before getting personal chef insurance. 

Number of Employees

Just like the café business insurance, the cost of personal chef business insurance is influenced by the number of employees. If your business has a significant number of employees, your policy will cost more. This is because the insurance policy covers your employees as well. 

Per-Occurrence Limit

Some businesses are prone to claims due to high risk. If your chef business is prone to risks, you will pay more for your insurance cover. The claims history also plays an important role in determining the insurance cost. If your industry faces a lot of lawsuits or claims, the insurance cost will also increase. This is important because you need to get a comprehensive insurance cover that protects you against claims.


To get more idea about the cost, here's a table showing the rates of the best personal chef insurance companies:

CompanyCost per monthCost per yearBest for
Next$70.00$840.00Easy personal and private chef insurance application
State Farm$62.00$744.00Comprehensive private chef coverage
Thimble$53.13$637.56Basic liability coverage for personal and private chefs
USPCA$25.00$300.00Membership-based private chef insurance and personal chef insurance

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Private and Personal Chef Insurance Companies

Here are some reviews of the best carriers for personal chef insurance. Read to know their pros, cons, and pricing for a $1 million general liability coverage. 

Next Insurance

Next Insurance is the 3rd leading insurtech company with a total funding of $881 million. It aims to provide an efficient and cost-effective small business insurance to personal and private chefs as well as other independent professionals like bakers , vendors , cake designers , and computer technicians . Next allows their policyholders to furnish certificates of insurance and name additional insureds with no additional fees.

Pros

  • Allows customers to bundles insurance coverages to get 5% up to 10% discount

  • Online claims filing and insurance application

  • Free certificate of insurance and naming of additional insureds

Cons

  • Everything is done via the Next insurance website and so, not so techy users might find difficulties in familiarizing how things work

Best for : Easy personal and private chef insurance application

Average cost: $70 per month

Our rating : 10/10

State Farm Insurance

While State Farm is famous for its auto insurance policies, it still offers coverage for personal chefs with its catering business insurance program. The coverage this company provides is numerous. Also, the company itself is good as it takes pride in ensuring that customers only deal with highly trained agents who also run their own businesses. This allows State Farm to quickly evaluate the risks their customers must be guarded for. Aside from personal and private chefs, State Farm insures hotels , coffee shops , and food trucks .

Pros

  • Numerous coverages in its personal and private chef insurance

  • Commercial auto policy for chefs is trusty

  • Agents are legit business owners who have first-hand experience about the risks customers face

Cons

  • Rumored to refuse cancellation of insurance policies and refuse refunds

Best for : Comprehensive private chef coverage

Average cost: $62 per month 

Our rating : 10/10

Thimble Insurance

Thimble, just like Next, allows customers to get insurance by applying online. The problem with this company is that it’s personal and private chef insurance only offers basic liability coverage. Nonetheless, Thimble has a five star BBB rating and a 4.8 star rating at TrustPilot. Meaning that a lot of policyholders enjoy its services. Thimble even has online industry tools that allow customers to get an estimated cost of their premiums.

Pros

  • Online insurance application process

  • Five star BBB rating

Cons

  • Personal chef insurance isn’t comprehensive and offers additional coverages as stand-alone policies

Best for: Basic liability coverage for personal and private chefs

Average cost: $53.13 per month 

Our rating : 8/10


USPCA Private and Personal Chef Insurance

The USPCA (United States Personal Chef Association) offers a liability insurance program. However, this coverage is only available for USPCA members who are in good standing. A unique feature about this program is that it doesn’t cover individual members but the entire organization as a whole. Coverage also extends to the members’ employees and business partners. USPCA’s chef insurance offers $1 million general liability per occurrence limit and $3 million aggregate limit. There’s also professional liability with the same limits.

Pros

  • Unique liability coverage for personal and private chefs

  • GL and PL coverages that don’t only cover the policyholder but also their employees and business partners

Cons

  • A customer must be register to USPCA before enjoying its liability insurance program

Best for : Membership-based private chef insurance and personal chef insurance

Average cost: $25 per month 

Our rating : 8/10


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