I photographed a wedding with a second shooter (her first time) 2 months ago. At 7pm at the end of the reception my assistant vomited all over the lobby. I received an email this morning that the venue charged the bride and groom a $75.00 bio-hazard cleanup fee. So I guess my question is should I be responsible for that fee? There was absolutely no alcohol involved. The bride literally gave us 10 minutes to eat before wanting something else. So it could have been a food allergy, it could have been eating too fast. I'm not looking for a debate, just opinions on what would be the best to resolve this issue. Tia

  • 3
    This really has absolutely nothing to do with photography. It's a social mores/legality question.
    – Tetsujin
    Aug 28 '17 at 12:55
  • 7
    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it about social mores and ethics, and event contract law. This is more appropriate for Law, perhaps?
    – scottbb
    Aug 28 '17 at 13:05
  • i think thats better question for workplace.stackexchange.com Aug 28 '17 at 15:46
  • 2
    I agree that this is not a photography-related question. Your company did some on-site work and did something that required a cleanup fee.
    – osullic
    Aug 28 '17 at 15:47
  • Your employee vomited. Probably from eating too fast, nervousness, not staying properly hydrated all day, etc. Unless you have solid documentation that the actions of the venue, caterer (if applicable - you haven't said if the venue or a caterer provided the food), or wedding party caused your employee to vomit you are responsible for your employee's actions when they are working for you. That's why you should always carry liability insurance when working professionally. In this case the amount would not be enough to warrant a claim, but next time you might not be so lucky.
    – Michael C
    Aug 29 '17 at 1:54

So, your employee acted in a completely unprofessional manner and caused the venue to charge the couple extra. Of course you should pay it, along with an apology to the couple for the inconvenience caused.

  • 5
    It's probably not worth it in this case because of the small actual cost, but this is what your business liability insurance is for [& if you don't have any, you shouldn't be trading].
    – Tetsujin
    Aug 28 '17 at 13:37
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    I've read the question multiple times and can't see any mention of alcohol or unprofessionalism (though you may, of course, be right). Would your answer be the same if the assistant had an allergic reaction to food provided by the bride/venue?
    – dav1dsm1th
    Aug 28 '17 at 14:42
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    Seems to me that a legitimate case of food poisoning (assuming it was okay for an employee/sub of the photographer to partake in the food/desserts/etc.) would completely change the answer. That would be a tort against the venue by the wedding party. If it were a food allergy, it depends on who knew what (did the venue use/include an in ingredient that they knew they weren't supposed to, or did not disclose its presence? Or did the affected individual not disclose a known allergy?) These specifics are very germane to the correctness of the answer(s).
    – scottbb
    Aug 28 '17 at 18:40
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    @scottbb It seems to me that if it was a legitimate case of food poisoning then the 2nd shooter would not have been the only person vomiting all over the place. The guests likely ate much more of the same food over a much longer time period. Well, unless the photo team brought their own food...
    – Michael C
    Aug 30 '17 at 7:37

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