Having a single pastor means that many of the responsibilities that multiple pastors generally share fall to one person. In a small church with the amount of responsibility assigned to a solo pastor, it is not uncommon to see fatigue and exhaustion.
Coverage for this vital role usually holds with the committee. Still, the cost often limits decision-makers from offering health insurance coverage to their pastors as part of this coverage. Although offering the coverage to your pastor can be seen as costly, it helps keep the pastor’s health in check for the long term.
If you are looking for ways to take care of your pastor, don’t worry because we have more than one way to discuss taking care of your pastor. Mentioned below are the 4 best health insurance plans to take care of your solo pastors. Make sure to read them all.
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1. Group Health Insurance
If you have more than one employee working for your church, then you can easily apply for group health insurance in any state. Even if the only priest is the only employee in your church, you can still apply for group health insurance in some states.
However, the high cost of group health insurance may not always be an option for churches. Also, you may need to keep up with the participation rate, and the available plan may not work for all the employees.
2. Informal Stipend
In case group health insurance is not an option, many churches or small businesses offer a health insurance stipend to cover all the medical costs. These churches offer their pastor a certain amount of allowance that the pastor can spend on his health care as he pleases.
Although this option seems to be the easy way out, it has some disadvantages. The biggest one of the disadvantages is that the stipend is considered taxable income, and therefore will not be tax-free for your pastor or church employees.
Another disadvantage of the informal stipend is that churches or small businesses are not able to confirm whether the stipend is spent on health care costs or not.
3. Individual coverage Health Reimbursement Arrangements (HRAs)
An Individual coverage Health Reimbursement Arrangements (HRAs) is a good option if your solo pastor is your sole employee. This peculiarity will allow you to compensate your individual pastor up to a certain amount each month. It will be tax-free compared to an informal stipend.
Another advantage of the Individual coverage Health Reimbursement Arrangements (HRAs) is that the allowance recipient can only spend that amount on health expenses. Therefore, you’ll be sure that the pastor is using the allowance properly.
But with the Individual coverage Health Reimbursement Arrangements (HRAs), you need to keep in mind that if your church has more employees than a single pastor, you will need to set the eligibility requirements so that only the pastor can set the pastor is eligible for the benefits.
Suppose your church has employees other than a single pastor or is growing. In that case, the best possible option for you is the Qualified Small Business Employer Health Reimbursement Arrangement (QSEHRA).
QSEHRA allows you to help your employees with health care expenses, such as individual premiums. With this feature, employees purchase the healthcare services they need and are reimbursed tax-free up to their assigned allowances.
The employer can offer QSEHRA to a full-time employee and a part-time employee, which depends entirely on the employer.
One thing to note is that you cannot give different allowances to different employees based on anything other than the family status (whether the employee is married or has dependents).
That is all with the 4 best health insurance plans to take care of your solo pastors. If you still didn’t find the one option you are looking for, keep looking because we have done our best to provide you with the best health insurance options to easily cover your solo pastor. If you have any questions or suggestions regarding the above-discussed topic, make sure to enter them in the comment section below. We love to hear your feedback, so make sure to share it.