Insuring a Church Against Risk

A church faces similar risks as any regular business, and so similarly needs some risk management plan in place. Getting an insurance is one step it can do to minimize liability in case of accidents, lawsuits or damage to properties.

Find out the basics of church insurance from our guide.

Insuring a church is similar in basic ways to insuring a business. Each may face different levels of risks, but both face similar threats of property destruction through environmental hazards, “workers” are similarly prone to professional errors and omissions, and a church is not a place where one could not slip and fall. That is why a church and its volunteers, staff and pastor need the same protection as does a regular business. Without such protection, the congregation could lose assets to disasters or to lawsuits.

Basic Insurance for a Church

Here are some insurance that a church could purchase for its protection:

  • Property Insurance – a basic property insurance could help pay for the replacement or expenses related to the loss of church properties due to common disasters such as fire, flood or theft. An extra coverage for ordinance and law could also come handy in case damage to church facilities necessitates a renovation that would require added fixtures to comply with new regulations by the city.
  • Liability Insurance – General liability insurance could protect the church from lawsuits and related expenses in case someone, who could be a church member, meets an accident while at the church’s premises. Professional liability insurance could protect church board members and officers, the pastor or volunteers from suits because of errors, omissions, or misconduct.
  • Auto Insurance – An auto insurance could help pay for the damages that might arose when a vehicle owned by the church or the pastor met an accident. The payment could be for medical expenses of those who were injured, or for the cost of repairs to vehicles.
  • Health, Life and Disability Insurance – The reality of sickness and death that poses itself more evidently when it presents itself as a medical bill is a fact that cannot be avoided. One way that a church could prepare for this expense when its pastor gets sick or meet an accident is through health, life and disability insurance. A life insurance in case of his death could help support the church financially during a transition of leadership.
  • Workers Compensation Insurance – usually mandated by state laws, this insurance ensures that full-time or part-time church employees are compensated for injuries suffered while at the service of the church

Special Considerations When Insuring a Church

Some churches hold a long list of antique items and highly valued furniture. When disaster strikes, it would be hard to value every object without a proper account of them. Keeping tabs of such church items with supporting pictures and videos could make claims processing easier. Since valuable church items could easily be stolen, a church could enroll them for extra coverage against theft. It could subscribe to a policy that reimburses according to the value at the time of loss (per value) or for the actual value to replace the item. Premiums for the latter are higher.

There are insurers that specialize in church insurance. But to get a detailed advice about church insurance, it could be best to use an insurance broker.


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