Wedding Industry Expert Discusses Experiences With Wedding Industry Law:
The following is a story from Wedding Industry Expert, and Founder of the SelltheBride.com site, as well as its parent site, LocalTrafficBuilder, Brian Lawrence, about his brushes with the law and the Wedding Industry, and the stellar insights he can share. Yikes! Thanks for taking care of this one for us Brian!
In the earlier years of my wedding industry career, I owned stores that were wedding centers. Wedding centers provided one-stop shopping for the bride and groom primarily through sub-contracting to reliable vendors. I was a young, ambitious, entrepreneur very much focused on both closing sales and gaining a high volume.
Sure, I cared about the end result, but that was mostly in thought rather than action. I was eager and naive, like we all have been. Because of this though, I went ahead and printed up all my contract and subcontract agreements without the consultation of an attorney.
Maybe this doesn’t surprise you, maybe it does, but my company ended up being taken to small claims court on several occasions. Not only that, but my company lost every time. It did not matter that I thought I protected myself with how I worded the contract; my contracts didn’t have the clauses that were crafted by a knowledgeable attorney. Make all the jokes you want about lawyers, but they sure do know their business!
Now here is the real surprise though, ironically the best outcome I ever experienced in court, was from something that looked like it was going to be my worst. Here’s a brief background of what happened: a client hired a limousine from my company. The bride sat down in the backseat of the limousine and her $10,000 gown got soaked by champagne from a previous wedding. Needless to say, I had not planned on such a predicament, for myself, or for this unfortunate bride.
Now of course, she sued my company, and had the limousine vendor appear as the defendant, since that was who would technically be held responsible according to the subcontracting agreement. The Judge nullified the agreement, but still said my company was responsible. Fortunately, the Judge only ruled for the cleaning bill at the dry cleaners for less than $100. Whew!
These days, I know now to use an attorney. Double whew! Yet, in all my years, I have struggled to find attorneys who genuinely know the wedding industry, and have taken an interest in the laws and litigation practices surrounding it.
That is until I came across Rob Schenk at WeddingIndustryLaw.com. I strongly recommend his site for great insights and case studies through articles and podcasts. Here just one of his many sample articles he writes. Though he writes in response to people (consumers) looking to sue, this article, like all of his others, outlines very important potential industry legal issues. Just reading his responses can help you think about the possibilities and how to better protect yourself.
Now if only I could go back in time and tell my younger self what I know now, or better yet, if this website had existed back then. Well, actually, as they say, experience is the greatest teacher of all, so I take that back. Also, the Internet didn’t exist back then. But who’s counting the years anyway?