General Liability

Liquor Liability

Additional Insurance

Detailed Requirements

General Liability

All events are required to show proof of General Liability insurance coverage with a minimum of $1,000,000 limit per occurrence.

Proof of insurance must include these two pages (see examples):

  1. Certificate of Insurance
  2. "Additional Insured" policy endorsement on form CG 20 12 or CG 2026

Sample Documents

Both must name the City of Seattle as an Additional Insured.

The Certificate Holder must be:

City of Seattle - Risk Mgt Div

PO Box 94669

Seattle, WA 98124

NOTE: Do NOT mail your certificate to this address. Please submit via email or fax to the Special Events Office.

Liquor Liability

Events with alcohol service must also show proof of Liquor Liability insurance coverage with a minimum of $2,000,000 limit per occurrence. 

  • If the event is organized by a non-profit organization, then the Liquor Liability coverage amount can be reduced to $1,000,000. 
  • Please note that Host Liquor Liability coverage is acceptable only when alcohol is being served to guests at the event free of charge. It is NOT acceptable for beer gardens or other alcohol sales.  

Additional Insurance 

Additional insurance coverage is required for events with certain activities or features. The most common are: 

  • Inflatables (like bouncy houses)  
  • Animal activities with non-standard household pets (like horses or ponies) 
  • Pyrotechnics (fireworks) 

See the detailed requirements below for complete details on additional insurance.  


The Special Events Office staff can assist with some very basic information regarding the requirements for your insurance. If you need detailed information, please contact Risk Management.

Detailed Requirements 


The City of Seattle requires that all Special Event Permits be supported by evidence of insurance coverage for the term of the permit. Insurance for a constitutionally protected event may be waived if (1) the City's Risk Manager or designee determines that the planned event does not present a substantial or significant public liability or property damage exposure for the City or its officers and (2) the applicant agrees to indemnify the City as contained in Paragraph C, below (under CITY OF SEATTLE SPECIAL EVENT PERMIT - INDEMNIFICATION OBLIGATIONS). 

Prior to commencing any of the activities approved by a Special Event Permit, the applicant, at no expense to the City, shall obtain and file with the City's Risk Management Department no less than 30 days prior to the event that must meet the minimum requirements stated below. All insurance policies (1) shall be subject to approval by the City's Risk Management Department as to company, form and coverage; (2) shall be primary to and non-contributory with all other insurance and self-insurance maintained by the City, and (3) must protect the City from any and all claims and risks in connection with any activity performed by the applicant by virtue of this Agreement, or any use and occupancy of the Premises authorized by this Agreement. Non-Admitted Insurers must have surplus lines stamp on certificate or certificate must have copy of surplus lines stamped declarations page attached. A City Special Event Permit will not be issued until the insurance has been approved by the City's Risk Management Department.    

1. Commercial General Liability. Written on an insurance industry standard occurrence form (CG 00 01 10 01) or equivalent with:  

- Premises/Operations Liability 

 - Products/Completed Operations

- Personal/Advertising Injury  

- Contractual Liability  

- Independent Contractors Liability (if applicable) 

 - Stop Gap or Employers Contingent Liability (if applicable)  

- Liquor Liability/Host Liquor Liability (if applicable) 

 - Owned and Non-Owned Watercraft (if applicable)   

Minimum limit of liability shall be $1,000,000 Combined Single Limit Bodily and Property Damage (CSL) each occurrence except:   

  • Where liability insurance is required by any section of the Seattle Fire Code, or as a permit condition for any controlled hazardous activity, including pyrotechnic activities, with an approved permit from City of Seattle Fire Marshal: Minimum limits $2,000,000 CSL per occurrence and annual aggregate with no deductible. The Fire Chief or the Fire Chief's authorized representative may increase or decrease these amounts.  


  • Liquor Liability Insurance, with an approved permit from Washington State Liquor Control Board: Minimum limits $2,000,000 CSL each occurrence.  


  • Pony Rides, Petting Zoos, and other animal related activities with non-standard household pets, or for inflatables: Minimum limits $2,000,000 CSL per occurrence.  


  • Motorized and/or power supported tool and equipment activities, including chainsaws, hydraulic lifts, drilling augers, bucket lifts, and other items: Minimum limits $2,000,000 CSL per occurrence.  


  • Motorized individual participant activities, including motorcycles, jet skis, powered model cars, boats and planes, and non-standard personal car activities: Minimum limits $2,000,000 CSL per occurrence.  


  • Motorized and motor assisted carnival type rides, bungee jumps, trampolines, orbital rides, and related rides and attractions commonly associated with a fair or carnival: Minimum limits $5,000,000 CSL per occurrence.  

 2. Auto Liability. If vehicles are used for other than nominal and standard commute purposes, a policy of Business Automobile Liability, on an insurance industry standard form (CA 00 01) or equivalent including coverage for owned, non-owned, leased or hired vehicles, or equivalent coverage. Minimum limit of insurance shall be $1,000,000 CSL per occurrence.   

3. Valet Parking. Requires Commercial General Liability or Garage Liability (with limits as per paragraph 1.) with Garage Keepers Legal Liability limits of not less than $150,000 each vehicle/$500,000 per location for ACV Comprehensive and Collision to insure vehicles in the care, custody or control of the valet. Deductible shall not exceed $500.   

4. Volunteers. Commercial insurance provisions must be documented for all Volunteers, with a minimum limit of $25,000 per person Medical/AD&D, and personal liability with a minimum limit of $100,000 per person. Volunteers driving in the course of their activity must have current liability insurance that meets the State of Washington statutes. Permit holders are encouraged to require, or provide, excess liability insurance for their volunteer drivers.   

5. Workers' Compensation. The permit holder shall secure its liability for industrial injury to its employees in accordance with the provisions of Title 51 of the Revised Code of Washington. The permit holder shall be responsible for Workers' Compensation Insurance for any subcontractor it may use or hire for purposes of this permit activity. If the permit holder's activities require working on or around a navigable waterway the permit holder shall provide evidence of the United States Longshore and Harbor Workers (USL&H) if necessary to be in compliance with Federal Statutes. The permit holder shall assume all risk of damage to the activity site and its property, injury to its officers, directors, agents, contractors, or invitees, in or about the activity premises from any cause, and waives all claims against the City. The permit holder also waives, with respect to the City only, its immunity under RCW Title 51, Industrial Insurance of the Revised Code of Washington.   

6. Competitive Athletic Events (Running, Swimming, etc...) - Participant Medical Coverage. All participants must sign indemnification agreements holding the City of Seattle, its employees, officers, officials, volunteers, and agents, harmless from all claims related to or resulting from the participant's activities and resulting injuries or death. Otherwise, each participant must be covered under commercial insurance coverage providing not less than $25,000 per person Medical/AD&D limits of insurance. In some instances, a waiver reducing required limits to $5,000 per person will be available. Coverage may be available under a City-sponsored policy for a nominal charge. Call City Risk Management for details.   

7. Other Provisions. All insurance coverage provisions, and limits, may be revised or increased by the City's Risk Manager to reflect risk exposure. All insurance policies and subsequent renewals must be maintained in full force and effect, at no expense to the City, throughout the entire period of the permit. All deductibles or self-insured retentions are the responsibility of the permit holder but must be disclosed and are subject to approval by the City's Risk Manager.   8. The following documents must be provided as evidence of insurance coverage:  

  • A signed Certificate of Insurance, showing the policy numbers, ISO form numbers, any deductible or self-insured retention, effective dates, limits of liability sorted by required coverage type, name and dates of events. Specific or unusual exposure coverage required by the permit should be stated. Certificate holder must be "The City of Seattle."  


  • Copy(ies) of the actual endorsement(s) naming the "City of Seattle" as an Additional Insured, showing the policy number and signed by an authorized representative of the insurance company, on ISO form CG 20 26 or equivalent for CGL and Pyrotechnic Liability and ISO form CA 20 48 or equivalent for Business Auto liability. Primary and Non-Contributory Limits must apply.  


A. Permittee's Obligation: Permittee shall indemnify, defend, and hold the City, its elected officials, officers, employees and agents harmless from any and all claims, actions, suits, proceedings, damages, costs, and expenses (including reasonable fees of attorneys and paralegal assistants) whatsoever arising out of the use and occupation of the public premises authorized by this Permit and any act or omission of the Permittee or any of its officers, employees, agents, licensees, subpermittees or the invitees of any of the same (hereinafter collectively referred to as "actors") including patent, trademark and copyright infringement; or arising out of or relating to any concurrent act or omission of any of the above-referenced actors and the City or any City officer, elected official, employee or agent; Provided, that nothing herein shall be construed as requiring the Permittee to indemnify the City against liability for bodily injury or damage to property caused by or resulting from the sole negligence of the City or of any of its officers, elected officials, employees, or agents. The indemnification obligation set forth in this section shall survive the expiration or earlier termination of this Permit.   

B. Indemnification Regarding Any Alteration, Addition, or Improvement Attached to Real Estate: Where any bodily injury or damage to property results from or arises out of any construction, alteration, repair, addition to, subtraction from, improvement to, or maintenance of, any building, road, excavation, or other structure, project, development, or improvement attached to real estate, including moving and demolition in connection therewith, the indemnification provided pursuant to Subsections A and B hereof shall be limited to the extent of the indemnitor's negligence.   

C.  Indemnification Regarding Constitutionally Protected Events:  The Permittee shall indemnify and hold the City harmless from any and all claims, damages, expenses, loss or liability for which permittee is responsible under law resulting from willful or negligent acts or omissions of permittee, its officers, agents, or employees in connection with the permitted event or activity.

In the event that any lawsuit based upon any such claim, action, loss, damage or cost is brought against the City where the sole basis of the City's liability is the granting of this permit, the Permittee, after being notified that such lawsuit has been started, shall defend such lawsuit at no expense to the City; and if, in such lawsuit, a final judgment is rendered against the City, or against the City and the Permittee, jointly, the Permitee shall promptly satisfy such judgment.

The Permittee's liability under this indemnification provision shall not be reduced by any City negligence; provided, that nothing shall require the Permittee to indemnify the City against the negligence of any City officer, employee or agent acting within the scope of such person's employment."


Special Events

Address: 700 5th Avenue, Suite 5752, Seattle, WA, 98104
Mailing Address: PO Box 94708, Seattle, WA, 98124-4708
Phone: (206) 684-8017
Fax: (206) 684-7025

The City of Seattle plays a strong role in helping event planners bring people together safely and successfully in both city-wide and neighborhood events.