How to tell if your wedding photographer is legit

THE JGP JOURNAL

Jason Goldfarb Photography is a Seattle wedding photographer who values telling your story through timeless, candid, and true-to-life images. He photographs weddings and engagements in Seattle, Washington and throughout the PNW. 

How to tell if your wedding photographer is legit

Anyone can call themselves a photographer, but how can you tell if they’re a legit business?

Here are a few things to look out for to see if the photographer you want to hire for your wedding is legit, or if they are a scam.

@jasongoldfarbphotography

How to tell if your wedding photographer is legit? There can be a lot of scams in the wedding industry so make sure you’re hiring a legit vendors πŸ‘€ #seattleweddingphotographer #seattlewedding #seattlephotobooth #washingtonwedding #washingtonweddingphotographer #pnwweddingphotographer #pnwwedding

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Business License

Most wedding photographers start out as a hobbyist β€” but once they turn pro, they should have a business licence. Having a business license means that they’re registered with their state and/or locality and pay taxes.

An easy way to check if your photographer is licenced is to look up your state’s tax office online (usually called a Department of Licensing or Department of Revenue) and look up your photographer’s business name. If they’re not registered, I’d consider that a red flag.

Contract

Make sure your photographer has a contract. Not only does this lay out all the terms of working with them, but it also protects you and is a legal document. Should anything happen β€” you get COVID, you have to reschedule your wedding, etc β€” this is all covered in the contract.

A contract is NON-NEGOTIABLE. If your photographer doesn’t have one, don’t walk β€” RUN.

Liability Insurance

A legit photographer will have General Liability Insurance (usually in the amount of $1-3M). A lot of wedding venues require photographers to have insurance β€” this is really important. Having liability insurance means that if something happens during a wedding (i.e. if a light stand hits a guest), the photographer’s insurance will pay for it. Any legit business will have insurance, as it’s only about $5-600 per year.

Reviews

Check the photographer’s reviews! A legit photographer will have testimonials where their former clients will describe what it’s like to work with them. These can be on Google, Yelp, etc β€” or they can even be on a photographer’s website.

Full Gallery

Lastly, be sure to ask your photographer to send you a link to a full-gallery. A lot of photographers have only done styled shoots, or essentially, staged weddings with models. This is a great way for us photographers to try out new gear, test ideas in a controlled way. But, if they cannot produce a full-gallery for you, I would be very wary of booking with them.

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