Close this search box.

What Is The Difference Between Liquor Liability and General Liability Insurance?

Table of Contents
liquor on a bar

As a food business owner, you’re tasked with doing what is best for your business. This can include sourcing the best ingredients, nailing the perfect menu, becoming a social media guru, and more. Doing what is best for your business can also include protecting it with insurance. 

Insurance can be the differentiating factor between serious financial loss and being perfectly fine after filing a claim. 

Running a food business comes with several unique risks. You will most definitely want to protect your business with General Liability insurance. General Liability insurance can protect your business from the costs of the most common liability claims. 

While General Liability insurance is great if you are a farmers market vendor, food truck owner, home-based baker, caterer, or other small food business, the minute you add liquor sales to your business, you are open to a new slew of risks. 

General Liability insurance can’t protect your business from liquor-related claims. Instead, you will need to add Liquor Liability insurance to your policy. If you sell or furnish alcohol as a part of your business operations, then you will need Liquor Liability insurance in addition to your General Liability policy. 

This information may draw the question, “What is the difference between Liquor Liability insurance and General Liability insurance?” Well, keep reading to learn the difference between the two insurance protections and how they can protect your business. 

bartender serving drinks

What Is General Liability Insurance?

General Liability insurance is a combination of coverages designed to protect your business from third-party bodily injury and property damage claims. As mentioned above, these claims are the most common claims your business will see. General Liability can protect your business from the financial stress of claims. 

Claims can include

  • A customer trips over a piece of your equipment and sprains an ankle. They sue you and you’re stuck with the medical bills.
  • While at an event, you forget to re-light one of your burners and the meat dropped to a dangerous temperature. Everyone who ate the meat contracted food poisoning and now you’re left with the attorney fees.
  • A vicious windstorm blows through the farmers market you’re serving food at and damages your equipment. Now you have your damaged equipment to pay for. 


Your General Liability insurance policy can include Product Liability insurance, Tools & Equipment insurance, and Damage to Premises Rented insurance. Combined, this policy can protect your business from a slew of claims costs.  

What Is Liquor Liability Insurance?

Liquor Liability insurance provides your business protection from the costs associated with liquor-related claims. If you sell, serve, or furnish alcohol as part of your business operations then you need Liquor Liability insurance. 

Liquor-related claims can often be expensive, costing your business thousands of dollars. Depending on the coverage options selected, Liquor Liability insurance can protect your business in the following situations. 

  • A guest at a wedding you’re catering enjoys the open bar a little too much and causes damage to your equipment. 
  • While serving at a corporate dinner event, a guest becomes intoxicated and starts a fight. 
  • A customer imbibes one too many and when leaving the party you’re serving at, they cause an injury accident. 

When Would You Need Liquor Liability Insurance?

Your business would need Liquor Liability insurance if you sell, furnish, or serve alcohol in any capacity. 

If you are a caterer who brings the alcohol to the party, if you are a for-hire bartender, if your food truck serves craft beer, or if you are a private chef then your business most definitely needs Liquor Liability insurance. 

When you add serving liquor to your business you open a door to a bevy of risks. As aforementioned, these risks can include injury and property damage. This can seem a bit daunting for a business owner. However, insurance can help protect your business from the costs associated with liquor-related claims. Costs can include medical fees, litigation costs, and property replacement costs. 

When Would You Need General Liability Insurance?

If you are a food truck owner, home-based baker, or other small food business that doesn’t serve alcohol in any form, you will want to protect your business with General Liability insurance. 

Your business would need General Liability insurance if you sell any products made to be consumed by your customers. With any food business, no matter how cautious and careful you are, there is always a risk of food poisoning. General Liability insurance can help protect your business from the costs related to food poisoning.

When Would You Need Both?

Your business would need both General Liability insurance and Liquor Liability insurance if you decided to add alcohol to your business operation. In order to sell, serve, or furnish alcohol, you will need Liquor Liability insurance. The reason you would need both is that Liquor Liability insurance cannot protect you from General Liability claims. Liquor Liability insurance only protects you from liquor-related claims. The same goes for General Liability insurance alone. It cannot protect you from liquor-related claims. 


How Can You Protect Your Business?

With the Food Liability Insurance Program (FLIP), you can choose from four different Liquor Liability insurance policies. Or if you’re just looking for General Liability coverage, we offer several different options so you can best fit your insurance to your business. 

FLIP Liquor Liability policies include:

  • Platinum – General Liability + Liquor Liability Annual Policy 
  • Gold – Liquor Liability Annual Policy
  • Silver – General Liability + Liquor Liability Event Policy
  • Bronze – Liquor Liability Event Policy 

Need Liquor Liability insurance? Check out this page for additional information and to choose the policy that best fits your business needs. 

If you’re thinking, “Yeah that’s cool and all, but I just need General Liability insurance,” then you’re in luck. Here is a list of food businesses that FLIP insures, choose your specialty and enjoy all the protection that food liability insurance has to offer. 

Protecting your business with insurance can lead to some fantastic opportunities. 

  • Increased sales
  • More customers
  • An increase in booked events 
  • A better business reputation
  • Financial peace of mind 


Protect your business today!

Get Covered With
Small Business Insurance
Monthly Prices Starting at