Your responsibility when planning church building works
An overview of what you need to consider when planning building works at your church. It is very important that you understand the insurance implications of building works and when you should contact Ecclesiastical.
The difference between building and contract works
Building works relate to the actual work being carried out at your church whereas contract works relate to the insurance policy.
Cover for building works
Your policy provides automatic cover for contract works and site materials for contracts not exceeding £150,000 (including VAT and fees). If you have limited cover for your buildings this may not meet your contractual obligations. You should check your schedule for the extent of your cover and discuss this with your architect.
In all other circumstances we will need you to complete a building works questionnaire so we can quote for suitable insurance cover for you.
Regardless of the value of the building works or the contract type, if any of the following apply please get in touch:
- Scaffolding will be required
- Hot works are involved, for example welding
- Work involves major alterations, repairs or additions to the premises
What is Faculty approval?
A Faculty is permission to carry out work on a church and is given by your local Diocesan Advisory Committee (DAC).
Your DAC may ask for a letter from us to confirm that insurance is in place for the works.
Types of building works contracts
Non-formal contracts (exchange of letters)
Many small works are completed under an informal written agreement known as an exchange of letters which details the work in broad terms and the price to be paid.
We do not need to be told about an exchange of letters for minor contract works where the contractor is responsible for loss or damage to the contract works and site materials.
If the contractor is not responsible for the site and materials you will need to provide more information about the work to us on our Non-Formal Contract (exchange of letters) form.
A formal contract will normally be a JCT contract which covers in detail the arrangements of a building project. Please be aware that the insurance obligations under the 2016 edition of the JCT Minor Works Contract differ from previous editions.
The type of building contract you have entered will determine whether the PCC is responsible for the insurance. If you are, we can provide you with a quote to cover the contract works by calling on 0345 777 3322.
What are ‘hot works’?
Every year there are numerous fires on construction sites and in buildings undergoing refurbishment, many caused by 'hot works' such as, welding, grinding, the use of open flames or the application of heat.
When hot works are present certain procedures must be followed and we’ll need your contractor to complete a hot works permit.
Is external metal covered if we have scaffolding in place?
We have specific requirements before we can provide cover and normally theft of external metal is not covered while scaffolding is erected.
However, in some circumstances, we may be able to provide cover subject to you being able to meet certain security conditions.
What if volunteers are involved in the works?
What happens if the church needs to close during building works?
We do not consider a church undergoing building works as being unoccupied.
However, if there is a period of un-occupancy prior to commencement or following completion of the contract works, contact us on 0345 777 3322 as soon as possible as it may be necessary for us to amend your cover.
What happens if our building works overrun?
If the works are scheduled to overrun the original anticipated completion date, contact us in case we need to extend your cover on 0345 777 3322.
Depending on the revised anticipated completion date, an additional premium may be required.
What do we need to do once the building works have completed?
Where the contract works include capital additions for example an extension, contact us to review your buildings sum insured.
In the case of church halls, your architect may be able to advise an appropriate adjustment to the buildings sum insured.