Insurance

Churchwardens are responsible for:

  • the care of the land, buildings, furnishings and effects that belong to the church
  • keeping them adequately insured against loss by fire
  • maintaining insurance against any other insurable hazard to the church, its property, the incumbents and the churchwardens (Canon 15, Section 4 [10])

Parishes and congregations need to purchase minimum insurance from Aon Reed Stenhouse Inc., the broker designated by the Diocese.

Not sure who to call or where to find information? Check the Insurance cheat sheet.

Insurance renewal policies & applications

Aon will send parishes their renewal policies and the renewal applications at the end of November every year. You need to return them to Aon by January. If you’ve made changes to your policy during the current year, contact Aon for your adjusted renewal premium.

Contact Dennis Hinh at dennis.hinh@aon.ca if you need a copy of your renewal package. He’ll update your address and send you an electronic or hard copy.

Why are our church’s insurance premiums increasing in 2020?

Over the last decade, insurance rates and premiums have been either declining or flat, while at the same time claims costs have been rising every year. Catastrophic losses are occurring with more frequency around the world, and the cumulative effect has been the need to increase premiums to a level in line with claims payments.

Over the last five years, the Diocese has also experienced an upward trend in claims frequency. Aon’s detailed analysis of the Diocese’s property performance indicates claims frequency is too high. Water damage claims are also driving the negative performance with their frequency.

Until now there was sufficient competitiveness and capacity available from the insurance companies to hold off premium increases. This past year has seen a dramatic change in the insurance marketplace, with insurance companies raising premiums across the board or reducing their participation on accounts, or non-renewing accounts altogether, without much flexibility in the process.

For this renewal, the initial proposed increase across all lines from Ecclesiastical Insurance was much higher, but through the leveraging of not only the Diocese’s long history and relationship with Ecclesiastical, but also Aon’s standing in the industry itself, we were able to negotiate lower rates for each line.

Why did the 2020 renewal arrive so late in the year?

Negotiations for this renewal were tough and required significant analysis and time. Aon, working with the Diocese, believed it was best to continue to negotiate for better terms, understanding that this would take time and result in a later renewal delivery.

We pay our insurance premium directly to Ecclesiastical Insurance. Do we still need to pay the invoice from Aon?

Yes. If you are on direct bill with Ecclesiastical, your payments would not include the premium for your Umbrella, which is insured with Markel Insurance, nor the Aon service fee. Aon has included a self-addressed stamped envelope in your renewal package for you to use to send your payment to Aon.

Why did I get a blank payment assistance plan form from Ecclesiastical when we already pay them directly for their premium?

This is included every year so you can change banking information when you renew or during the term.

The payment hasn’t come out of our bank account – are we covered?

There’s a lag in processing the renewal monthly payments every year. Don’t worry – coverage is in place for all parishes.

Vacant/unoccupied properties

Buildings that are vacant or unoccupied need to be inspected on a regular basis to ensure their ongoing security and integrity and to maintain insurance coverage. Reporting requirements vary depending on the specific circumstances and season.

Parishes must immediately report all vacant or unoccupied properties to Aon. Then Aon will tell you about the inspection requirements and give you any reporting documentation you’ll need.

Property inspections should be documented in writing. You can use this inspection log. Keep your inspection records on file for reference.

Contacting Aon

To get in touch with Aon, refer to the contact list for both the Aon Service Team and the Ecclesiastical Service Team.

For more information, contact Lilian Qian, Treasurer and Director of Finance, at 416-363-6021, ext. 238 (1-800-668-8932); fax: 416-363-7678.

General FAQs

We’ve leased new equipment and need a certificate of insurance. Is this equipment covered?

Review the limits declared for your church any time values change to make sure there’s an adequate amount. Each parish is responsible for determining its own values. Aon will provide certificates of insurance as requested by you for these contracts.

I need a certificate of insurance for my church. Who do I contact?

Email acs@aon.ca for all certificate requests. Note “Anglican Diocese of Toronto Certificate Request – name of parish and address” in the subject line. Include all detail needed by the certificate holder and the coverage they need evidenced.

As a churchwarden, am I covered if I’m personally named in a claim involving the church?

In the event that you as churchwarden are personally named in a claim, such as a slip and fall incident, a wrongful dismissal or an allegation of your negligence resulting in abuse, you are covered by the church’s insurance policy subject to its limits, terms and conditions.   

Our church has a $2 million limit for directors and officers liability insurance – is this limit per churchwarden and minister(s) or per claim?

The limit on your policy is the total limit available per occurrence and for all claims made in the policy term. The cost of defense by the insurer is outside of the limit for all covered losses that are not for wrongful dismissal/employment practices liability (for the latter types of claims, defense costs are within the policy limit).

The policy responds to legal liability of the church arising from a wrongful event or allegation of wrongdoing. This is often a statement of claim in the courts, or claims made via a quasi-judicial body likethe Ontario Human Rights Tribunal. Churches can choose to buy up to a $5 million limit for this coverage. If you want to talk about directors and officers liability coverage in more detail, get in touch with Aon.