No one is immune from the need for health insurance – including clergy. For clergy, the first place to look for health insurance coverage is through your denomination. Other options are Health Savings Accounts, providers who offer discounts to clergy, and Medicaid. There are alternative options in which you may be eligible.
Are you a member of the clergy who is in need of health insurance coverage? Simply enter your zip code in the area provided to search for health insurance quotes.
Many churches consider health insurance coverage a vital component of a pastor’s salary. Because many churches are so small, they find paying for this coverage to be difficult. Costs for healthcare and insurance are rising faster than most church budgets can stand.
Perhaps you are a member of the clergy looking for health insurance coverage. On the other hand, you may be the person at your church that is responsible for finding clergy health insurance coverage. In either case, obtaining clergy health insurance is by far the most important type of clergy insurance. There are a few coverage options that you will want to research.
Many denominations offer health insurance coverage to member pastors. Because these plans are often group plans, they generally offer better coverage at a lower cost. This should be your first stop on your search.
One way to hold down costs for clergy health insurance is to enroll in a Health Savings Account (HSA). Contributions are made to a bank-held account and reserved solely for healthcare costs. Enrolling in an HSA is usually a good idea as an addition to a high-deductible insurance policy. When used in conjunction, there is a significant reduction in premium. Another plus to an HSA is that surplus funds roll over from year to year. There are also certain tax advantages to an HSA.
- Some providers do not accept Medicaid
- Medicaid does not pay for many medications
- Being on Medicaid can be a very humbling experience
Before enrolling in, or offering your clergy, Medicaid as a health plan, look closely at all other options available. For only a few extra dollars a month, you may be able to get a high-deductible plan with an HSA.
There are still some good souls out there who offer discounted services to clergy. Whether or not a health insurance plan is in place, check around with providers to see if they will offer to provide service at a discounted rate. Some denominations sponsor their own hospitals that often offer great discounts to member clergy.
Are there tax advantages for clergy who pay for their health insurance coverage?
The IRS regulations for clergy health insurance costs are the same as those for the general public. Clergy who pay the expenses for their health coverage can deduct any costs that exceed 7.5% of their adjusted gross income. Clergy considered self-employed can deduct the full cost of medical costs for themselves or their dependents. This is shown as an adjustment on line 29 of the Federal Form 1040.
Finally, clergy that contribute to an HSA can deduct the full contribution to that account. In addition, the interest earned from that account is not taxable. There are also tax advantages for eligible churches that pay the premium for their pastor’s health insurance coverage.
What is the average annual salary for clergy?
There are many factors that determine the salary of a member of the clergy. There are government agencies that collect and report on this type of data. According to those studies, clergy salaries range from a little over $13,000 to around $93,000 with the average being a little over $34,000.
What is the cost for clergy health insurance?
There is no definitive answer to this question. The possibilities are endless and depend on many factors. Health insurance for clergy is similar to that of any person. If the pastor can take advantage of a group plan, the cost will be significantly lower than that of an individual plan. Enrolling in an HSA will reduce the monthly premium cost as well.
For example, the 2010 individual health premium rate for the Evangelical Congregation Church was $525 per month, whereas the family rate was $1,462. The 2011 monthly rates for the Episcopal Church in Southern Ohio ranged from $596 to $783 for individual coverage and from $1,669 to $2,190 for family.
Unfortunately, many clergy are not covered under a health insurance plan. As with any individual or small business, the costs are simply prohibitive.
If you need to find affordable clergy insurance, enter your zip code to obtain health insurance quotes from reputable companies.