Updated: Jul 20
Why is it important to have an insurer that focuses on serving churches?
Insurance should help you navigate risk and offer solutions when the unexpected occurs. There are certain standard questions that you should always think about when looking for coverage, including:
Does the insurer offer the lines of coverage and limits that are appropriate for my church?
What is the reputation of the insurer?
Is the insurer financially strong?
Will my church have access to great customer service?
What does the claims process entail? Is it fast, fair, and responsive?
Can the insurer grow with my ministry and adapt to changing coverage needs?
However, as religious organizations, there are other factors that churches should keep in mind. Many insurance carriers take a general approach to coverage for all businesses and organizations. Just as insurance for a factory may differ from insurance for a restaurant, insurance for churches should be appropriate for their organization. Selecting a carrier who does not focus on serving churches can prevent your ministry from having access to a number of benefits to help improve your insurance experience.
Carriers who focus on the religious industry dedicate extensive time and resources to analyzing church exposures, refining prices, and providing coverages that are appropriate for religious organizations. They understand church risks, operations, vernacular, and, in some cases, budgetary restrictions. They place value in your work and strive to help further your goals. United Methodist churches should only select carriers that are able to provide coverage that meets the minimum requirements set forth by the General Council on Finance and Administration in adherence with The Book of Discipline.
Carriers with experience serving churches know that tailored approaches can be helpful when addressing:
Property-unique architecture, stained glass, etc.
Pastoral counseling issues
Commercial auto--vans, buses, etc.
Additionally, these carriers often offer risk management tools and resources that speak directly to a church audience. By selecting a carrier that focuses on church insurance, you can expect coverage that is designed to reflect your specific organization.
You can look to your insurance agency to help identify carriers that have experience serving religious organizations. Your insurance agency should also understand how best to serve churches through trusted experience and a commitment to your vision.
Having the right insurance protection matters. If you would like to help ensure that your coverage is working for your church, speak to your insurance agent.
UMIP is currently the only coverage program with direct ties to The United Methodist Church community. AmVenture Insurance Agency, its trusted partner, offers access to a variety of carriers that focus on serving churches. Call 866-203-0777 to learn more about how UMIP can help protect your church.
Questions about Insurance or Risk Management? We are here for you. Email firstname.lastname@example.org and your question might be featured in an upcoming article in the Church Protection Connection.
This content has been prepared by United Methodist Insurance Company (UMI) for informational purposes only. No article or document may accurately contemplate all possible scenarios or church resources. As such, this information is meant to foster discussion by the individual church and its members to develop a plan tailored to its own circumstances. UMI is providing this information with no warranties or guarantees of any kind and it should not be viewed as legal, financial, or other professional advice. All liability is expressly disclaimed. Any claim examples described herein are general in nature, may or may not be based on actual claims, and are for informational purposes only. Any coverage available for a claim is determined from the facts and circumstances of the claim as well as the terms and conditions of any applicable policy, including any exclusions or deductibles. In the event of a conflict with the content herein, the terms and conditions of any issued policy will control. Individual coverage may vary and may not be available in all states.
The commercial insurance coverages for United Methodist Insurance are sold and serviced directly or indirectly by Sovereign Insurance Agency (CA Lic. No. 0B01380) ("Sovereign") and underwritten by various available insurance markets. Sovereign pays United Methodist Insurance a royalty for the use of its intellectual property.