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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Insurer drops misconduct training requirement

For an Episcopal group to buy insurance from Church Insurance Co., it had to complete eight hours of sexual misconduct awareness training. But the company recently filed to remove that prerequisite, citing loss of business to other companies without the requirement.

Rod Webster, Church Insurance senior vice president, told Episcopal Life that the company feels the requirement is no longer necessary because it wouldn't use the lack of this training to "walk away from a claim" related to sexual misconduct.

Jack Sauerman, ELCA insurance manager, says Charity First, which provides insurance for many ELCA congregations, doesn't require sexual misconduct awareness training but could in the future. He says the trend is for insurance companies to require groups to prove that they're prepared for potential lawsuits.

"In effect, the insurance industry is saying if you want certain types of coverage, show us ... you are taking the appropriate steps to manage the associated risks," he says.


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