Can You Fire Your Wedding Band Or DJ Last Minute? Here’s What Experts Say
The wedding-planning process can be equal parts exciting and stressful at the same time. There's so much to consider, and sometimes, not everything goes the way you might have flawlessly envisioned. But it's important that you're happy with the choices you make for your wedding day, even if that means making last-minute changes. If you're cutting it close to the big day and you're stressed about the music that'll play at your reception, can you fire your wedding band or DJ last minute? Truth is, you should be prepared for some fallout.
"If you want to fire a wedding band or a wedding DJ, the first thing you have to do is to consider the reason you are firing them," relationship and etiquette expert April Masini, tells Elite Daily. "The reason you have for firing a wedding band or DJ at the last minute is important," she explains. "For instance, if you want to fire them because they represented themselves to you as a 12-piece band, but at the last minute tell you only three members will actually be playing your wedding, that’s one type of reason. Another type of reason may be that you realized you you don’t want music at all, or that your father-in-law wants to be the DJ." Whatever the case, it's important to "know your reason and be clear," as Masini says.
Now, before you reach out to your band or DJ, you might want to check out your contract with them. Most — if not all — wedding vendors will have you sign a contract and pay a deposit before booking them, and if you cancel, you could be at risk of breaking that contract. "If you haven’t already, read your written agreement," Masini advises. "Look for cancellation clauses. They should be spelled out pretty clearly." Triple-check your contract and make sure you won't be liable for any extra charges if you cancel at the last minute.
Likely, canceling your DJ won't have the same repercussions as canceling your caterer, as your "DJ hasn't gone and ordered food so many days out of the wedding and they don't typically have the same amount of staff hired," Kia Martinson, a wedding planner for ESTOccasions, tells Elite Daily. "The odds are there is cut off point and you have to have a reason to fire someone. Read the contract, make sure you know what your exit plan is and what is your backup plan as well." In short, be prepared.
When you let your DJ or band know that you're canceling, Masini says that it's best to do it in writing. "If the reason for firing your wedding band or DJ has to do with some sort of breach of the agreement you’ve signed, or the oral agreement you’ve made, whether it’s a misrepresentation of the services, the date, or the amount of money to be paid, then you should put this in writing," she explains. "Tell the band or DJ what you want and why, and that you need to hear back from them with confirmation of their acceptance of your cancellation." This will ensure that they understand why you decided to cancel and that there's no confusion.
Remember, this is your wedding, and you have every right to do whatever you need to to make it the way you want it. But that might mean having to make some last-minute changes, and if you do decide to cancel or fire your DJ, band, or any other vendor, try to put yourself in their shoes first. Be respectful, honest, and clear, as Masini says, and it should turn out for the best.