Every insurance contract in this industry is different, and we are not saying that money should not be a factor, but it needs to be a component of your decision and not your full decision. It is crucial to read the fine print and question your agent on where coverages are.
Insurance Companies can have policy forms (contracts) on either admitted or non-admitted basis. This is EXTREMELY important to understand and is the backbone of everything we preach.
Admitted Insurance types have policy forms (coverages) and pricing that must adhere to state regulations. Non-Admitted Insurance types do not.
To our understanding, you cannot obtain admitted insurance when it comes to axe-throwing activities. Insurance companies want freedom in policy forms (coverages) and rates. The result of this is that every insurance policy is different and a close reading of all coverages AND exclusions is necessary as every contract is different. Some policies have language that allows for BYOB, and others exclude it, some allow for mobile (off-site axe throwing) while others exclude it, and some will even EXCLUDE the participants from throwing axes. There are insurance agents that do not fully understand the difference.
I would highly recommend an outside legal counsel review of all coverages and policy forms. While money should be one factor in your decision, if it is the only deciding factor, at some point you may get burned. Please pay close attention to the full policy specimen and not just the face of the quote that shows limits. Insurance policies are often hundred-page contracts, and I would highly advise your agent to show you specific coverage such as BYOB, Off-Site (mobile) coverage, or even proof that participants are not excluded from throwing axes.
Why do Non-Admitted Insurance companies have the ability for flexibility in their policy forms and pricing? Non-admitted insurance companies are allowed flexibility as the insurance companies are not backed by the government if they become insolvent and cannot pay claims. There are many industries where it is just not feasible to obtain admitted insurance as the insurance companies operating in the industry want flexibility in what they get to say in the insurance policies and what they charge you and axe throwing is one of those industries (much of the construction and bar industry is that way too, so this is not uncommon).
There are very reputable carriers in the industry, and it is important to ensure they are “A” rated by AmBest.com, which is the go-to source/credit agency that rates insurance companies ability to pay claims and stay in business. You should also seek out insurance policy forms that are stamped, issued, and approved by Insurance Service Office Inc., which develops the standard policy forms/contracts filed with state regulators that are regularly used by most admitted insurance companies. There ARE insurance companies in this industry that develop their own policy forms and that in our opinion can be extremely dangerous as you do not know what words they change in the policies.