A common complaint about insurance in general is that you pay increasing premiums year after year and never get anything out of it. And when you do make a claim, it's like pulling hen's teeth to realize a benefit. Cost considerations aside, the topic of insurance in a church setting can be a hot one. Some have the perspective that “with the Lord on our side, who even needs insurance?” Some arrive at the same conclusion by taking a pragmatic approach, determining that the risk is just too low and the premiums too high to warrant coverage.
I suspect though that the majority of churches do have insurance, although coverage may vary. Any church with a mortgage or debt is likely required to carry adequate insurance. Policies will normally include provisions for both property and liability. But all policies are not created equal. There are a good number of property coverage options, some of which are considered to be standard and as such, are included under the broad coverage, and others are considered additional or optional. The same applies to liability coverage. A good many churches have an insurance professional or two amongst their membership. Maybe, they are playing a role in advising, determining, or brokering your insurance.
My church in Ontario, Canada is insured under the Church Protection Plus plan, a national plan specifically tailored for churches and endorsed by the CRCNA for Canada. In 2011, my church sustained considerable wind and water damage arising from a spring storm. I was pleasantly surprised and grateful that Church Protection Plus was there for us and covered all of the repairs, a cost in excess of $40,000. The service and attention we received was also first rate. The process of making a claim can reveal a lot about your insurance service provider. A similar plan, Church Protector, has been endorsed in the USA.
- Are there any churches who have opted not to insure and what’s your rationale in making this decision?
- Who reviews and determines your policy and coverage including options, limits, and deductibles?
- If you are insured with one of the endorsed plans or if you've made other arrangements, what has your experience been?