2018 Insurance Premium Increases

Protecting scarce resources of the church is certainly always ‘front and centre’ when setting insurance strategies for the Synod. This is certainly true this year when faced with overall market premium increases of 28% for the renewal of the Synod’s general insurance program.

Invariably insurance (and more to the point - the payment of premium) is considered an unnecessary and unwelcome tax upon the already over-burdened budgets of individuals and Congregations alike.  Only when a claim is promptly settled in full for that unforeseen fire, storm or threat of legal action does insurance become elevated in status to a prudent and justifiable expense.

Like any financial sector, the insurance industry follows a cyclical path whereby premium rates rise and fall (or level off) in response to changing economic market conditions. Such changes are often triggered by financial results and can be dramatically impacted by global catastrophic events.

So what is Uniting Resources doing to ensure it delivers the most competitively priced insurance protection that the market has to offer?

  1. Firstly the Uniting Resources Board has agreed to cap the increase of external premium to 10% for those Congregations who have made no claims or material change to their insured property assets during the past 3 years.  For those who have made claims and/or asset increases then premium adjustments will apply according to a method of calculation set by actuaries and approved by the Uniting Resources Board.

 

  1. Each year the insurance team instructs the Synod’s broker to re-market certain policies in accordance with a renewal strategy approved by the Uniting Resources Board.  We are always cautious about ‘smash and grab’ deals boasting below market premiums as they are often unsustainable. Instead we choose to engage only those insurers who have a robust balance sheet and security rating with a proven track record of paying claims in full and on time.

 

  1. We have also initiated a national buying group and invited other Synods around the country to participate.  As with any buying group, we hope to leverage the full power of UCA’s bulk buying capabilities and deliver the most competitively priced insurance coverage that the market has to offer. We hope that the national buying group will be introduced in 2019.

 

  1. For struggling Congregations (especially those situated within our drought ravaged rural communities) we have put together an assistance package which has been shared with all Presbytery Treasurers and Chairpersons. This assistance package includes premium funding as well as means tested premium grants for the worst affected rural Congregations.                 

Please do not hesitate to contact Uniting Resources should you have any questions regarding the above. 

E: insurance@nswact.uca.org.au  T: 1800 951 145