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Three Common Questions About Insurance For Nonprofits

March 31, 2022

When nonprofits have questions about insurance, it can be difficult to find answers that apply directly to their needs. While there are many factors to consider when addressing the unique coverage needs of nonprofit organizations, here are three questions about insurance we often receive.

1. General Liability Vs. Professional Liability. What’s The Difference?

While both cover risks, General Liability focuses on physical risk to a person or property, and Professional Liability is meant for issues like errors and omissions in business practices.

General Liability

Common claims include:

  • Third-Party Property Damage
  • Third-Party Bodily Injury (such as slip & fall)
  • Personal or Advertising Injury (libel, slander, copyright)

Professional Liability

Common claims include:

  • Negligence in services provided
  • Failure to provide services
  • Financial damages from oversight
  • And breach of contract

2. Should I Offer Health Insurance For Employees At My Nonprofit?

First, it’s important to note that you may not be required to provide healthcare coverage to your employees. However, larger employers (50+ employees) can see fines if they do NOT provide coverage to 95% of their employees as a result of the Affordable Care Act. In some cities, such as San Francisco, the specific requirements can differ, so make sure to check before making a decision.

Second, and most important, is the consideration of your employees’ needs. Nonprofit employees dedicate their lives to serving a greater purpose, and taking care of them is an honor, privilege, and a great responsibility. Providing healthcare coverage goes a long way in creating a happy, sustainable work environment.

If you decide to provide healthcare coverage to your employees, there are multiple avenues you can take to find the right options for your organization. One of the best ways to avoid being stuck with a one-size-fits-all solution is to use an independent broker, like CalNonprofits Insurance Services, to help you pick and choose the specific options that fit your organization’s goals.

3. What Is A Qualifying Event And Why Do They Matter?

A Qualifying Life Event, or QLE, is any change in a person’s life that makes them eligible for Special Enrollment Periods. These changes allow a person to enroll themselves in a health insurance policy outside the normal Open Enrollment Period.

Most simply put, there are four basic categories for QLEs.

Loss Of Coverage

One instance that we see in this category is an individual who is losing their current coverage from either their former employer or their spouse’s plan. Another common QLE in this category is an individual turning 26 years old. At this time, they are no longer eligible to remain on their parent’s policy and can enroll on their own at that time.

Change In A Household

The most common instance we see is the birth or adoption of a child. However, other QLEs include marriage, divorce, or death.


Obviously the most extensive category, this covers a multitude of possible QLEs. Some instances in this category include becoming a U.S. citizen, changes in income, gaining tribe status, and more.

According to Aryn Walter, Employee Benefits Portal Technician at CNIS, “The list of QLEs is long, and being aware of the specific circumstances can be challenging while learning how to administer benefits. However, you can always turn to your CNIS representative for help.”

More Questions About Insurance

You’re likely to have many more questions about insurance for your nonprofit organization, and we love to answer them! We’ll write more about the common questions and concerns for nonprofits but, in the meantime, give us a call or send us an email to get your questions answered today!

If you’d like to learn more about CNIS, or how having a Nonprofit-only insurance broker can benefit your organization, use the button below.

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