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Limiting liability on customers art.


Staff member
Because of the many type of printers of art today and the delicate inks that are used, I'm considering trying to limit my liability on customers art. We as framers can take in a $2000 piece of art with the reward of a few dollars profit. One tiny drop of sweat or spit from your mouth and the piece it ruined. Picture developers have used a small disclamer that limited their liability to the cost of film replacement.

  • Can we require through notice in the store, that customers must bring special handling neededs to our attention about things like waterbased inks?

    Can we charge extra for special handling to use as insurance to cover cost of art replacement.

    Can we limit liability to 1x, 2x, or 3x the price of the frame order.

I might spend a dime at the lawyer and have it done right.

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SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
M....... has a disclaimer on the bottom of their invoice limiting the liability to $250.00. Who knows if that would stand up in a court of law. However, what value is worthwhile to sue over.

There is a consideration that the higher liability coverage differentiates us from the big boxes.


PFG, Picture Framing God
Nothing you can do can stop someone from suing you.

Putting a disclaimer at the bottom of your invoice could possibly stop a few customers from contacting an attorney should something go awry.

I have a small print disclaimer on my invoices that limits my liability to a maximum of $50.00 for damaged artwork. I've had a lot of customers read it before signing the invoice, I've never seen a lawyer read it before signing. In a court room, small print means absolutly nothing.

Unless you can afford an insurance policy that would protect you, I would suggest you try not to screw up any pictures.

This is making a light go on in my head. Framer, do you think it is possible an insurance carrier would be willing to offer a group discount to The Grumblers for that type of insurance?



SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
This kind of insurance is something I've been hoping the PPFA would look into and was one of the things I put in my proposal for if I was Queen of the PPFA. Our professional photographers association offers it as part of their member benefits (it's called indemnefication.) If we ever have a problem, they will send their lawyers and help us get it resolved. It's one less thing to worry about in business.

John Ranes II CPF GCF

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
<blockquote>quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by JRB:
This is making a light go on in my head. Framer, do you think it is possible an insurance carrier would be willing to offer a group discount to The Grumblers for that type of insurance?<hr></blockquote>

John......The Grumblers is probably too loose of an affiliation for an insurance company to work up a contract, but as Anne hinted, this is something for the "New" PPFA to examine. Another option would be to bring this up as a FramerSelect perk.....JRB Why don't you bring it up as a subject on the FS members forum?



SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
I fully accept that anyone can sue anyone else, I have never heard of any picture framers having problems in Ireland though I don’t expect that anyone would really boost about it.

I have a disclaimer/condition of sale on my work docket/sales order, this disclaimer is used by other framers in Ireland, I’m lead to believe that it is better to accept no responsibility what so ever, this is like the advise we are given about our auto insurance never accept liability no matter what the circumstances are.

My disclaimer:

“Conditions of sale. We shall not be held responsible for loss or any damage to any articles left for service in the case of fire, theft or other casualty.”

I understand that some framers expect the client to carry the insurance, or in some cases will only carry out certain work in the client’s presence.

Bob Carter

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Dermot waives liablity due to "fire, theft or other causualty." That's the one thing that almost all insurance crriers will cover in the US. The problem is like Framer indicated when it's our fault. Capax does have a care and custody coverage, that thank goodness, we've never had to use. Call them if you don't have their policy. It's the best we've seen designed for our trade. It's worth a look.

As for liability limits, most of the posts are accurate. But we do place, under advise of counsel, of $250.00 limit unless they have a receipt or certified appraisal. It just helps set the bar in case that $10.99 tourist work becomes damaged and then it becomes a priceless heirloom. It just sets the onus on the owner to prove the value as oppossed to us trying to prove it isn't all that valuable.

It thankfully has never been tested

Marc Lizer

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Disclaimers aside: It all comes down to Bailment.

For instnace: The disclaimer on the bottom or the Valet ticket.
You are giving them some money, and your car. They have bailment. Since they are being paid, they are , for the most part, on the hook for anything that happens while in thier care, like say, leaving the resturant to find your car on blocks.

Now let's say your neighbor lets you park your car on their driveway (or lawn depending upon part of town). This is a gratuitous bailment. He has the car, but is not getting paid. It is a favor. If something happens while in the custody of the neighor, like say, you come home and find the car on blocks, it is less likely the neighbor will be held at fault, because it was for free, and not for fee. Unless of course your neighbor is the one who took the tires at both home and the resturant. It which case he is running a chop shop, and you really shouldn't let him have the keys to your car anyways. Come to think of it, you may want to think about moving. :eek:


SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Marc is absolutely correct with the concept of BAILMENT. I have used the $250 limit for years.

I have added a twist to my disclaimer of "actual market value". This limit is an appraisal term. It will require a claim to be substantuated with a comparable sale of a similar item.

As for art with a value over $250.00, the value has to be declared at the time of the initiation of the order to be covered. According to my disclaimer.
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