Left Continue shopping
Your Order

You have no items in your cart

You might like
$88.00 $98.00
How to Legally Protect Your Event with Guest Speakers

How to Legally Protect Your Event with Guest Speakers

Hosting an event with guest speakers is an exciting opportunity to inspire, educate, and engage your audience. Whether it's a conference, seminar, or workshop, having reputable speakers can add significant value to your event.

In fact, hosting events as a business owner and building a line up of guest speakers that you knowww your audience would be excited to hear from is becoming a huge trend in the online business space and as a business owner myself, I’m here for it!

For many of us, we’re still looking to satisfy the itch to get into REAL rooms with like-minded people to learn from after we were deprived of community for so long after 2020.

While hosting an event and getting guest speakers on board can be such an incredible thing, it’s important not to overlook the legal aspects involved in safeguarding your event and everyone involved. 

From contractual agreements to intellectual property rights, there are various legal considerations that you as an event organizer must address to ensure a smooth and legally compliant experience.

With a rise in events – both virtually and in person – I thought it was time to give you the lowdown on how to protect your event with guest speakers, so that you can keep the excitement high while knowing that you are legally backed as well!

4 Ways To Protect Your Event With Guest Speakers

1. Implement Comprehensive Guest Speaker Contracts

It should come as no surprise that this is my FIRST tip for you! As a lawyer, I’m a big advocate for getting everything – and I really do mean everything – in writing.

When you decide to invite someone into your event to serve as a guest speaker, DON’T SKIP THE CONTRACT. 

A contract serves as a legally binding agreement that protects both parties by outlining the terms and conditions of the speaker's participation, as well as the expectations of you as the event organizer.

A comprehensive guest speaker contract should include various essential components, including:

  • Scope of Servicesclearly define the scope of the speaker's services, including the date, time, and location of their presentation or participation in the event and specify the topics or themes they are expected to cover and any specific requirements or deliverables.
  • Compensation and Expensesoutline the agreed-upon compensation for the speaker's services, including fees, travel expenses, accommodations, and any other reimbursable expenses. Be transparent about payment terms, including deadlines and methods of payment.
  • Intellectual Property Rightsaddress ownership and usage rights for any materials, content, or intellectual property created or provided by the speaker for the event. Clarify whether YOU (the event organizer) or the speaker retains ownership of these assets and specify any licensing or usage restrictions.
  • Cancellation and Terminationdefine the procedures and consequences for both parties in the event of cancellation or termination of the contract. Specify any penalties, refund policies, or alternative arrangements in case either of you needs to cancel or reschedule.
  • Indemnification and Liabilityinclude clauses that indemnify and hold harmless both you and the speaker from any liabilities, damages, or legal claims arising from their participation in the event. Clarify insurance coverage and responsibilities for mitigating risks.
  • Confidentiality and Non-Disclosureprotect sensitive information and proprietary materials by including confidentiality and non-disclosure provisions in the contract. Ensure that both parties understand their obligations regarding the handling and protection of confidential information shared during the course of the event.

By implementing a guest speaker contract, you establish clear expectations, minimize misunderstandings, and protect the interests of all involved!

2. Consider Proof of Insurance from Guest Speakers

Depending on the type of event you’re hosting, you may want to require proof of insurance from your guest speakers. By doing so, the insurance coverage can provide financial protection in case of accidents, injuries, or other unforeseen circumstances that may occur during the event.

By requiring guest speakers to carry adequate insurance coverage, you ensure that they have the means to address any potential liabilities that may arise from their participation.

There are various types of insurance with two of the most common being General Liability and Professional Liability.

General liability insurance typically covers bodily injury, property damage, and personal injury claims arising from the speaker's activities during the event. This coverage would protect both you as the event organizer and the venue from potential lawsuits or claims.

Professional Liability Insurance, also known as errors and omissions insurance, protects against claims of negligence, errors, or omissions in the speaker's professional services or advice.

Again, not every event needs this, but it could be wise to connect with a lawyer to determine what’s in your best interest as the event host!

3. Vet Guest Speakers Thoroughly

In addition to all of the legalities of inviting guest speakers into your event, it’s equally important to do thorough work beforehand to ensure that you’re inviting those who are trustworthy and will bring the utmost value to your event!

While you likely already have tons of connections online and you might *think* you know someone, you never know when they’re going to end up doing something you don’t vibe with and leave you in an absolute nightmare. 😞

To avoid that, I suggest taking the conversation out of the Instagram DM’s and speaking with them in person if possible, or at the very least on Zoom, to really vibe check. 

Before officially inviting them into your event, review their credentials, professional experience, and expertise in the relevant subject matter. Look for people who have a proven track record of delivering engaging and informative presentations that resonate with your target audience.

When you think you’ve made your decision and want to invite them into your event, go the extra step and reach out to previous event organizers or clients who have worked with the speaker in the past in order to gain feedback and insights into their professionalism, reliability, and effectiveness as a speaker.

It could also be wise to request samples of the speaker's past presentations or recordings to evaluate their speaking style, delivery, and content quality to ensure that their presentation style and content are engaging, relevant, and suitable for your event's audience.

Lastly, before extending that official invite, make sure that you clearly communicate your expectations, requirements, and agreements with the speaker regarding their participation in the event. Be up front about compensation, travel arrangements, presentation content, and logistical details to ensure mutual understanding and alignment.

Once you’ve determined that they’re a good fit for your event and you truly believe that the two of you are on the same page, you can trust that inviting them into your event as a guest speaker is a good move!

4. Secure Backup Speakers or Contingency Plans

Lastly, as I like to say, expect the best, prepare for the worst!

Even with all of the proper vetting and planning in the world, it’s very likely that unexpected circumstances will arise, so it’s best to have a Plan B in case Plan A goes out the window. 

For your event, it can be wise to secure backup speakers or implement contingency plans in case a scheduled guest speaker is unable to attend the event due to unforeseen circumstances such as illness, travel disruptions, or emergencies.

Having backup options in place can help mitigate the impact of last-minute cancellations and ensure that the event continues to proceed as smoothly as possible.

Plan and Host Your Next Business Event With Ease

Overall, it's easy to get swept up in the excitement of planning and organizing your event, but in the midst of the hustle and bustle, it's crucial not to overlook the importance of legally protecting your event, starting with the guest speakers that you invite to participate.

From implementing comprehensive guest speaker contracts to requiring proof of insurance and thoroughly vetting your speakers, these are several proactive steps you can take to mitigate risks, safeguard your event, and ensure a positive experience for everyone involved!

By prioritizing each of these, you’ll be able to create a fun and exciting event environment where speakers, attendees, and organizers can come together to share knowledge, connect, and inspire one another every step of the way!

⭐️ So, if you’re planning a future event and want to ensure that it’s the best it can be, follow the tips above and if you need a little extra help, go ahead and snag The Boutique Lawyer’s plug and play Speaker Agreement!

This contract template is ideal for both event hosts and organizers who are hiring speakers, ensuring all bases are covered before the big day, including intellectual property rights to confidentiality clauses, ensuring a mutual understanding and a successful event experience.

Here's to creating successful, stress-free events that leave a lasting impression on your audience. 🥂


If we haven’t had the chance to *virtually* meet yet, hey I’m Amber – not a regular lawyer, but a cool lawyer that helps online business owners sell without getting sued. 

If you like what you just read and want more cool lawyer things in your life, here’s a few ways to stay connected:

Let’s be pen pals! Subscribe to my email list to receive all of my best biz tips and behind the scenes goodies to keep your business bringing in sales (legally of course).

Binge the blog to get all of the legal information you need about running a business in a way that actually makes sense to your non-legal brain.

Come hang with me on the ‘gram! I often do AMA’s on stories, so you can submit your specific questions when they come up.

And if you’re in need of legal resources that you can ACTUALLY understand? Here’s a few ways I can help:

Step into TBL’s free library of legal resources for creative entrepreneurs where we throw open the doors and spill the tea on what works and what doesn't when it comes to legal protection, systems and sales.  

Browse the contract shop to find what’s missing in your biz and easily implement it with a plug and play template!

Need something else? Send me a DM! Always happy to lend a legal hand when I can.