You buy insurance for your church or other ministry so you don’t have to worry about an accident, lawsuit, or disaster destroying everything you have worked for. Insurance covers these risks, so you can focus on ministry.
If you’re just launching a new ministry, it’s important to have the right coverage in place before you open your doors. If your ministry hasn’t reviewed its insurance policy in some time, consider scheduling an appointment with an agent who specializes in church insurance to review your coverage.
Here’s a brief overview of the risks a multi-peril insurance policy covers.
General Property and Liability Protection
- Your Property: If a covered threat damages your building or its contents, your policy will help pay to repair or replace them. You can choose to insure against basic liability threats, such as fire, lightning, and wind, or a broader range of threats, including water damage and the weight of ice, sleet, or snow.
- Your People: If someone gets hurt while volunteering for your ministry or participating in ministry activities, your policy can cover your liability and help to pay their medical expenses. It can also help to defend your ministry against various lawsuits.
Additional Protection Options
- Your Vehicles: A commercial auto policy typically covers your ministry’s liability for injuries involving its vehicles. A non-owned vehicle policy provides liability protection when your ministry is driving borrowed or rented vehicles.
- Your Employees: When employees suffer a work-related injury or disease, a workers’ compensation policy can provide medical, disability, rehabilitation, and death benefits. Often, this type of protection is mandated by the state in which your ministry operates.
- Your Ministry Assets: An umbrella liability insurance policy can give your ministry excess liability protection worth $1 million, $5 million, or more. At very little cost, this protection simultaneously extends the limits and coverage of your general liability policy, your vehicle liability coverage, and your employers’ liability policy.
What’s Not Covered:
- Deductibles. A deductible is the portion of a loss that you must bear before insurance applies. For example, you might have to pay the first $500 of a claim, but insurance will pay the remaining $500,000. Deductibles help lower the overall cost of insurance by reducing the number of small claims filed.
- Flooding. Most property insurance policies exclude coverage for flood damage. If you desire to protect your ministry against flooding, ask your agent to help you buy a policy through the National Flood Insurance Program.
- Other exclusions. Every insurance policy will contain exclusions. Before buying an insurance policy, take a moment to review exactly what risks are covered and what risks aren’t, so you understand how much liability protection you’re purchasing.
More Options Available
- Optional Coverages. Your multi-peril policy offers a host of optional coverages, including protection against lawsuits alleging injuries from employment discrimination, sexual misconduct, or pastoral counseling.
- Travel Insurance. Some companies also offer foreign travel insurance for long- and short-term missionaries. You can obtain a policy that covers emergency medical care, medical-related evacuation, accidental death, foreign liability, travel assistance, and a host of other services for your travelers.
A church insurance agent can help you determine which options are right for your ministry.