Best Workers' Compensation Insurance for Churches


Workers' Compensation Insurance for Churches

When it comes to Workers’ Compensation Insurance for churches, Integrity Now Insurance Brokers has you covered.  

All employers, to include churches, are required by law to provide workers’ compensation benefits to their church staff by paying for workers’ compensation insurance. All employers must purchase workers’ compensation insurance, regardless of the number of employees.

When one of your church staff suffers a work-related accident or becomes ill due to conditions on the job, the church insurance company is required to pay for the employee’s medical treatment, lost wages, and possibly compensation for a permanent impairment and job retraining.


Many churches do not believe they are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance for their church for one reason or another.  If an employee becomes injured and the employer was not properly insured, the state of California has a little known program to help these employees. 


The Uninsured Employer’s Benefit Trust Fund (UEBTF) will step into the place of the lack of a church insurance company, to pay the needed worker’s compensation insurance benefits. The UEBTF will then attempt to recover the money paid out to the employee from the church who was considered by the state of California to be an illegally uninsured employer.

Common Work-Related Injuries at a Church

When it comes to churches there are no common work related injuries. Churches can be a bit unique in the things we do, and having worker’s compensation insurance for churches becomes all the more important.

I remember, walking into my own church and seeing our churches bookkeeper at the top of a 30 foot ladder trying to hang christmas decorations. As their church insurance agent, I had to advise against this but I knew they were going to continue.

If I had to come up with the most common workers’ compensation injuries that we see for churches, they are from car (or bus) accidents, falls, and lifting or moving objects.

The good news is, nearly all injuries and illnesses arising from a work related situation are eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. No matter if the injuries are related to a single job related accident, or an injury that happens over time like carpal tunnel issues, these work related illnesses and injuries are insured by your workers’ compensation insurance company.

How Much Workers' Compensation Insurance For Churches Is Included

The insurance limits that are included for your Workers’ Compensation Insurance for churches, differs depending on which state your church is located in.  For instance if your church is located in California, this state has what is known as statutory limits. 

Workers’ compensation insurance companies that insure a churches located in California, are required to provide the following insurance limits:

  • $1,000,00 EACH ACCIDENT

This means that for the state of California, no matter which workers’ compensation insurance company you select for your church, they are required to provide the same insurance coverage.

However, if your church is located in the state of Arizona, your workers’ compensation insurance coverage is not statutory.  You could be presented with two different options.

Arizona workers’ compensation insurance coverage limit – Option 1

  • $100,00 EACH ACCIDENT

Arizona workers’ compensation insurance coverage limit – Option 2

  • $500,00 EACH ACCIDENT

For our church clients located in Arizona, we will typically recommend option 2, as the price difference is nominal.  We have seen far to many workers’ compensation claims and the last thing we want to do is skimp on this important insurance coverage.  No matter which state your church is located in, we as your church insurance agent, we will help you make the right decision for your specific situation.  

Workers’ compensation insurance for churches is priced very competitively, so most churches can easily afford to obtain this vital coverage for their church staff.

Pastor Covered by workers' compensation insurance for churches

Can Pastors Be Classified As A 1099 Employee?

Depending on the State your church is located in, can change this answer.  For instance churches located in California will find it nearly impossible to classify a Pastor as a 1099 independent contractor.

Some organisations don’t want to classify their staff as an employee as a way to avoid purchasing the needed insurance.  Workers’ compensation insurance for churches or nonprofit is reasonably priced shows your staff that you care about them.  

This is largely the result of how California now defines an employee versus an independent contractor.  The following ABC test needs to be satisfied in order to be property classified as an independent contractor.


  1. Operates without the control or guidance of the hiring organization.
  2. Performs services unrelated to the hiring company’s core business. 
  3. Works independently in an established trade, occupation, or business that exists separately from the hiring business.

Number 2 listed above is the primary deal breaker for churches and nonprofit organisations.  As the Pastor, Sound Person, Music Director, and Worship Team all fall under the classification of being part of the core business of a church.  

It will be important that your church or nonprofit reclassify your 1099 employees, in order to comply with is new legal definition. 

Your organization will also need to take on the additional cost associated with workers’ compensation insurance for churches.  While some will see this as a burden, your employees will see it as an added benefit.  Now your church staff will be protected in the event of a work related injury.

Do Workers' Compensation Insurance For Churches Cover Staff At A Church Camp

The short answer is Yes.  Your employees are covered while they are engaging in work related activities.  These activities include being part of the leadership team at a week long church camp.  

Church property insurance companies understand churches, which is why they factor in these types of trips and events.  

A gray area we have found would include mission trips that take your church staff out of the county.  

Can I Insure Our Volunteers Under Our Churches workers' compensation insurance policy?

Workers’ Compensation Insurance for churches is different, because we as a church organization are different.  Unlike most businesses, we can have “employees” who do not want to be paid for their services.  

These are individuals who show up at church a few times during the week and take on different roles.  One of those roles could be a church secretary.  This would be a paid position normally, however, this person states they do not want to be paid.

As your church insurance brokers we work with insurance companies that can provide additional workers’ compensation insurance coverage for your volunteer employees.  The insurance premium is based on the total number of volunteer employees. 


Umbrella Provides Additional Protection - Workers' Compensation Insurance For Churches

When considering adding Workers’ Compensation Insurance for churches volunteer members, we are not typically referring to your church greeters, or people who help for a few minutes on Sunday or Tuesday night.  This coverage is intended for those people who come in and serve the church on a regular basis.  For all intended purposes, they are viewed by others who may not know your financial arrangement that they are an employee.

As a church, we would definitely want these individuals covered by our workers’ compensation insurance policy, in the event they were to get injured as a result of a job related injury.  

Do Umbrella Policies Provide Additional Coverage Over The Workers' Compensation Insurance For Churches

When your organization obtains an umbrella policy, this policy may provide additional coverages for your workers’ compensation insurance for churches and more.  The umbrella policy may sit in excess of the following insurance policies depending on the insurance company who is providing the umbrella coverage.

  • General Liability Insurance Policy
  • Business Auto Insurance
  • Directors and Officers Insurance
  • Workers’ Compensation Insurance for Churches
  • Religious Expressions Coverage
  • Abuse & Molestation Insurance
  • Employment Practice Liability Insurance

It is important to discuss with your church insurance agent, if your umbrella policy will provide additional benefits over all or some of your insurance coverages.  

Of the coverages listed above, the primary coverages most umbrella policy will provide additional liability protection include:  General Liability, Business Auto, and Workers’ Compensation Insurance for churches.

The other coverages are typically excluded from the umbrella, unless you pay an additional premium with the company that is willing to extend the additional protection.  If you are wanting certain coverages provided in excess of what is provided, your church may need to switch church insurance companies and pay a higher premium.  

Best in class Insurance Agent For Your Workers ' Compensation Insurance For Churches

Our church insurance agent’s are ready and waiting.  Our agents specialize in workers’ compensation insurance for churches, so you know we will obtain an affordable insurance policy. We can also help you with your churches general liability insurancedirectors and officers insuranceabuse and molestation insurance for churchesemployment practice liability insuranceGroup Health Insurance, and business auto insurance for buses as well.  We strive to make the insurance process as quick and smooth as possible. 

To get started, give us a call and/or fill out the contact form with any questions you might have related to your churches insurance. One of our church insurance experts will assist you throughout the entire process, providing unique insurance and risk management solutions for your Church. 

Don’t wait any longer; take the first step toward having adequate workers’ compensation insurance for churches today at an affordable price! 

States we Services: ArizonaCalifornia, Colorado, NevadaOhio, Texas, Washington  

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