Legal and Other Concerns Related to Teaching Cookie Decorating

My friend and I are starting to provide cookie decorating lessons in the month of June. Do I need to have the student sign liability papers? If so how do you write in them?  We are not a formal business yet, we are going to give it a try before we formalize. Is this a good move or should we just commit to the business? I don't know what I don't know about starting this venture!! Help!

Original Post

If you have any food service business, you should probably have standard liability insurance - i.e., so if someone gets hurt on your property or eating your food, you have some coverage. An insurance agent who specializes in restaurants/bakeries could give you more specific advice.

 

As far as teaching classes vs. baking cookies as a business (if that's what you're asking), they're very different businesses, in my opinion, requiring different skills and know-how. I'd say this to anyone starting out: I'd focus on establishing skills and a distinct style as a cookie decorator before trying to get into the business of teaching those skills. A deep portfolio of well executed cookies is pretty important to have in order to sell classes. Of course, knowing how to price to make money is also key. Teaching classes is not easy and takes tons of prep and cleanup. Setting price, as in selling decorated cookies, involves having a clear understanding of your cost structure.

Thanks Julia for your response.  my concern was more to the legal safety nets so  one can protect personal assets in case a student suffers an accident or allergy while I Am conducting a lesson from my kitchen.

Teaching vs selling was not what my question was about but your comment introduces another topic to discuss.

Originally Posted by Nancy Margarita:

Thanks Julia for your response.  my concern was more to the legal safety nets so  one can protect personal assets in case a student suffers an accident or allergy while I Am conducting a lesson from my kitchen.

Teaching vs selling was not what my question was about but your comment introduces another topic to discuss.

Sorry, I was responding to this: "We are not a formal business yet, we are going to give it a try before we formalize. Is this a good move or should we just commit to the business?" I thought you were asking if teaching was a good move for you. But, I agree, it's another topic, so let's keep this one to the liability issue.

As I said, I just carried business liability insurance to cover for the sorts of concerns you mentioned. I did not make people sign forms saying that I could not be held liable for these sorts of things - I don't think that would go over too well.

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