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Risk Management Minute

Valuable Information to Help You Protect Your Ministry

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Is There Coverage?

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Is There Coverage?

It’s a snowy Saturday. You, being the youth pastor, decide it’s a great day to hit the powder. You call up a couple of your teenagers and invite them along to Brother John’s house, who had extended the invite to use his snowmobiles anytime. You are having a great day until you run the snowmobile into a rock tearing up the engine and doing several thousand dollars of damage. Now what? Is there coverage?


Let’s talk about two scenarios. First off, let’s say this was a sanctioned church activity. Would there be coverage? Most church policies are written under “Special” form. Special form means that if a named peril isn’t listed as excluded, then it is covered. Since snowmobiles aren’t listed there would be coverage. However, here is a caveat to this. Just because something is not listed as excluded does not mean that the insurance carrier would approve of said activity. Juggling fire isn’t listed, but the standard church policy was not written to generally cover whatever you can dream up. Although they would pay the claim, chances are they would issue a non renewal and then you struggle finding insurance with this type of claim on your loss record.

Second scenario. This isn’t a church activity. The youth pastor decided on his own to call up a few kids and head over to a friend’s house on the weekend. No announcements were made at church, no permissions slips gathered, and no notification given to the insurance company to advise if this was an activity they would approve of.  Simply put, this was not a church activity. Therefore the church insurance does not apply and would not provide coverage. The owner of the snowmobile would need to file the claim on his own insurance. The same as if Brother John’s cousins came over and wrecked the snowmobile. Their employers would not be responsible.

The main thing to take away from this is to consider what events your ministry is promoting. Make sure you gather the proper release forms and if you’re not sure if it falls under the scope of your policy give us a call! That is what we are here for!  No event is worth risking your ministry. I’ve also included some links to some previous blogs going more in depth on the subject.
Evaluating Events 
Handing Over the Keys Can Be The Same As Handing Over Your Insurance

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Welcome to our Risk Management Minute Blog! My name is Jessica and I joined the First Insurance Group team in 2008. I began working in the Church Division in 2009 and as part of my job began to learn about the specific needs Churches face in regards to Risk Management. We have made it our goal to not only supply you with relevant information, but to take the work out of risk management by creating forms for you to print and use. Have questions on a topic we have yet to cover? Let me know! I will gladly do the research and provide any information I can.

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