General Liability Pool Program

There’s liability risk involved with every event, every vendor, every contractor, and every visitor and employee that steps onto your fairgrounds. Effective ways to reduce your fair’s exposure are: 1) to be a member of the fairs’ General Liability Program managed by CFSA, 2) to require that all facility renters, vendors and contractors provide proof of insurance coverage naming your fair and the state of California as additional insureds, and 3) to adhere to CFSA’s request that all CFSA General Liability pool members submit copies of contract certificates of insurance to CFSA for review to ensure they meet CFSA’s insurance requirements. You’ll find more information about this review service detailed farther down this page.

The fairs’ General Liability  pool program, administered by CFSA and shared by all participating pool members, provides protection for risks or liabilities arising from personal injury, including bodily injury and property damage, in addition to employment practices liability, public official errors and omissions liability (for District Agricultural Associations [DAAs] and other public agencies), and non-profit organization liability, including directors and officers liability for non-profit corporations. Our Special Events and Revenue Protection programs fall under its auspices as well.

For a quick look at some of this program’s coverages, please read this Summary of Protection. For a more detailed description, please read the program’s Memorandum of Coverage in your fair’s Red Book or contact Tom Amberson, CFSA’s Risk Department manager, for a copy. He can be reached  at 916/263-6180 or tamberson@cfsa.org.

CFSA’s Fair Contract Review Service provides double-check assurance that a facility user’s general liability coverage meets all of the insurance requirements agreed on by CFSA and the California Department of Food and Agriculture’s Fairs and Expositions’ (F&E) Branch.  This is important because certificates that meet these insurance requirements protect your fair.  And, if your fair is a member of CFSA’s General Liability pool program, it also protects the pool against preventable losses.

When a certificate does not meet CFSA’s insurance requirements, we will work on your behalf to correct the deficiencies. Then, should an incident occur on your fairgrounds during an event, the liability can be transferred or tendered to the appropriate insurance carrier.

CFSA also reviews all hazardous contracts for all DAA fairs (regardless of the dollar amount) – pool members and nonmembers – through a contract with the California Department of Food and Agriculture. Again, our goal is to ensure that all certificates meet insurance requirements agreed upon by CFSA and the Fairs and Expositions Branch.

Online insurance resources available to General Liability program participants. Select the document title to open the document: 

  • CFSA Insurance Requirements Operating Memorandum #19-01:  Effective as of August 29, 2019, this document provides detailed information about the insurance requirements for fairground contractors/facility renters wishing to do business on your fairgrounds.
  • Contract Review Procedures for Fairs:  This document provides information about the types of contracts General Liability pool participating fairs must submit to CFSA for review and approval before an event takes place.
  • Hazardous and Non-Hazardous Activities and Events List: This list identifies hazardous and non-hazardous fairground activities and events along with the minimum general liability limit for each. Tip: All hazardous activity and event (not fair-sponsored) contracts must be sent to CFSA for review and insurance requirements verification.

In 2018, CFSA reviewed 3,455 fair contracts submitted to California’s fairs by vendors, contractors and others wishing to use a fair’s facilities for hazardous and/or nonhazardous activities and events. Of these contracts, approximately 25% contained errors that CFSA caught and corrected. The most frequent error? Additional insured language not listed.

If you have a question about any aspect of the General Liability Program, please contact Tom Amberson, (916) 263-6180 or tamberson@cfsa.org.