How to Select an Insurance Provider for Your Church

Insurance protects your church from any havoc and financial distress resulting from an unexpected event. You are always there for your church; and likewise, you should select an insurance provider that’s always there for you and your church. The right insurance provider and the right insurance policy can make all the difference in protecting your church, and supporting its values and needs if the unthinkable occurs.

The following tips will help you during the process to select the right insurance provider for your church.

Consider a combination of price, product and services

Start off the process by researching the church insurance providers in the market. For example, looking up the following topics can be a good way to get started.

  • Who are the top church insurance providers?
  • What insurance products do they provide? Do they offer insurance related to property, liability, health, travel, workers’ compensation, business auto, sexual misconduct and more?
  • Does the insurance provider have any services that provide your church with value-added risk management tools, training and educational materials to protect against risky events?
  • What are the prices for the insurance protection? Most of the time you may need to work with agents to work out the details of the coverage before knowing the price.

Consider the financial rating of the insurance provider

The best way to understand your insurance provider’s financial strength is through its financial ratings. When shopping for a church insurance provider, it is ideal to choose a provider that has a top rating from at least one of the independent rating companies. A good rating means that the insurance provider has the financial strength to ensure it will be able to pay off future obligations to you should damages occur to your church.

The most popular rating systems are A.M. Best and Moody’s. Each rating agency has its own methodologies to decide the financial strength for the insurance company. Keep in mind that there are differences between the rating agencies and they may give different ratings to the same insurance provider.

Additionally, remember that since each rating agency focuses on different criteria and factors, do not automatically assume that the insurance provider with the highest rating is always the best choice. Copies of the full rating reports are usually available online through the rating systems, or in some large libraries.

Consider the insurance provider’s customer service

Make sure to research and inquire about the insurance provider’s customer service. Pay attention to the customer service so you can have a peace of mind that the agent and the insurance provider will be there for you when losses occur.

For example, does the provider send risk management information regarding steps to take to ensure the safety for your church and people? Will there be a scheduled property appraisal every couple of years to ensure your church is still properly covered? How does the insurance provider handle the claim process and how long does it take to process claims? You can understand this more by looking into any complaints made against the insurance provider. You can visit the National Association of Insurance Commissioners’ database for more information on this.

Choose the right an insurance agent

Usually insurance policies are purchased through agents or brokers. A qualified and competent insurance agent will be able to help your church decide the optimal amount of insurance and the proper coverage needed to protect your church against the unexpected. The agent will be able to provide policy recommendations based on a thorough analysis of your church’s needs. Determining how much insurance and what insurance coverages are needed are amongst the most important financial decisions around church insurance; and an agent will be able to help you through the process.

When choosing an insurance agent, do some research to make sure your agent is specialized in church insurance and is able to correctly identify the risks your church faces, and the coverage your church needs. Additionally, maintaining a solid, ongoing relationship with your insurance agent after the sale is important so the agent is aware of the constant changes within your church’s operations, and can provide property appraisal every few years to ensure your church is always properly covered.

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