Contract Talk-- How Do You Handle Cancellations?

So far this year I've had three brides completely cancel their weddings, one reschedule due to health concerns, and one cancel without bothering to get in contact. That's an unusually high rate, but I've heard from other businesses that they're experiencing the same thing recently.

My contract is pretty detailed as far as cancellations go because I've been doing this for 12 years and I've seen a lot of different cancellation scenarios.

The initial deposit is non-refundable. That's the topic for another post, but there are good reasons why that's not a refundable fee.

If a bride cancels I have an entire schedule of what's refundable and what isn't based on how far ahead of time the cancellation takes place. Depending on whether it's two months or two days out, it's detailed in there.

I also put a clause in that allows me to make exceptions if I want to, depending on the situation. If a bride cancels or reschedules for health reasons, for instance, I will usually make an exception. No need to be a creep about it.

Regardless of how you decide to handle cancellations, you need to have a policy in place that explains it to the client. Better to have it in writing before you need it than to not have it and find out that you do.

What policies do you have that cover cancellations? Leave your comment below to share the info.

 Kara Buntin owns A Cake To Remember LLC in Richmond VA, and cake supplies online at and

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