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Revisiting the Claims Process

Updated: Jul 27, 2022

When disaster strikes your ministry, you likely won’t be thinking about your insurance claim. You’ll be focused on protecting your people, making repairs, and navigating your potential financial implications. Luckily, maintaining appropriate coverage for your church can help mitigate many of those problems. However, you will first need to file a claim.

When should you file a claim?

If someone is injured, alleges misconduct, accusations are made against directors or officers, something is stolen, or property is damaged, it’s always a good idea to file a claim immediately. The claims process varies depending on the circumstances, so it’s very important that you submit your claims as soon as possible after an incident has occurred.

How can you support the claims process?

A great way to support the claims process is to cooperate with investigators and provide as much information as possible so that they can make an educated decision. Once the situation at your ministry is safe and contained, begin taking photos of the damages done to your property to properly document them. Gather any receipts or proof of ownership for any items that were stolen, damaged, or destroyed. By thoroughly collecting this information and quickly providing it to your insurance company, you increase your chances of having a smooth claims process.

Who should you contact?

Contact your insurance agency or carrier when you need to file a claim. Many companies have 24/7 support or offer online options like apps or websites that help you begin the claims process.

How long does it take for a claim to be resolved?

Every claim is different, and there are a number of different factors that affect the length of time it takes for a claim to be resolved. It could potentially take days, weeks, or even years for certain claims to be resolved depending on the circumstances.

What could be a cause of your claim being denied?

The primary reason for your claim being denied is that the loss isn’t covered by your policy. It’s important to read your policy or speak to your agent about any potential reasons that your claim could be denied. If you are unsure of what your coverage entails or if you think your coverage might not be appropriate for your church, contact your agent.

When you are covered by UMIP, we will be there when you need us. Churches have unique needs. As a part of the denomination, we understand the unique needs of United Methodist churches and their operations, which is reflected in our coverage options. Your ministry deserves outstanding insurance and UMIP works for you each day to help protect your church’s people, property, and finances.

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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.


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