Staff members employed by EFCA churches that provide FCMM’s Long Term Disability Insurance will receive an additional benefit starting January 1, 2014: group term life insurance. Each participant will now have a $10,000 term life benefit along with the same amount of accidental loss coverage (“AD&D”).
The LTD Plan has been available to EFCA churches since 2000 and was transferred to FCMM last year. The Plan was last enhanced in 2008 with an increased income cap for salary replacement.
The current rate for coverage will have a small increase for the first time in five years, but the plan will now include the added life insurance benefit. The rate will not change until April 1, 2014.
The FCMM LTD Plan includes features that may be overlooked by standard plans that are not geared to church employers:
- Clergy housing allowance is included in the salary base upon which benefits are calculated. Most LTD plans disregard the housing allowance.
- Portability: Coverage for a staff member relocating from one participating church to another can be continued via notice to FCMM.
- Conversion: A staff member leaving employment of a participating church may convert the policy to individual insurance.
- Definition of disability is based on inability to perform duties of your “own occupation” for the first three years of disability. This contrasts to a lesser coverage of “any occupation” in many plans.
- Inclusion of long term disability rider for the participant’s spouse at no additional cost.
- And, new, starting January 1: inclusion of $10,000 group term life and AD&D insurance for each covered person.
The additional insurance coverages will require completion of a beneficiary form. Information regarding the new program will be sent to each participating employer early in 2014.
The FCMM LTD Plan is a provision for the church, also. If a disability occurs, the insurance payments help the staff member with his or her financial needs, which gives the church more freedom to employ interim/replacement staff.
At FCMM, we believe the local church exercises good stewardship when staff members are provided with appropriate benefits to provide for their families.