#BeUMC | Learn More About The United Methodist Church

Benefits Frequently Asked Questions

Click each link to expand for the answer. 

Annual Conference/Appointment Changes

Payroll deductions are based on the pastor’s health insurance election and their UMPIP election.  CRSP and CPP should not be deducted from the pastor's payroll. The pastor should provide the person at the church responsible for payroll with this information. 

According to the Insurance Guidelines in the Conference Journal, the first premium will be deducted from their first full pay period of coverage. So, if they start on April 23, they will not have a premium deducted until the May 1 paycheck..

The new pastor’s compensation is provided by the District Superintendent when the appointment is made. This information is provided to the pastor and the SPRC chair via electronic or mailed letter.

The Pastor enters their compensation through the Clergy Financial Support Worksheet. Instructions can be found here. The pastor should also provide a copy of the CFSW to the treasurer as the treasurer may not have access to Data Services in order to see this information. 

Charge Conference – Clergy Benefits Budget/Benefit Changes for the New Year

Using the pastor’s compensation, you may determine the pension benefits using the CRSP calculator. The church portion of the HealthFlex premium can be found in the current year Journal and on the Health and Well Being Page

Based on the pastor’s elections, which the pastor should provide to the church, the costs can be found on the conference website on the Health and Well Being Page

Even if a pastor’s election stays the same as the prior year, the cost of the plans to the pastor are approved at annual conference and can be found on the conference website on the Health and Well Being Page as well as in the Journal.      


North Georgia elected to sponsor but not remit UMPIP payments. Therefore, the bills for the pastor are sent to the church. CRSP is the only pension amount billed by the conference and is included in the monthly invoice. 

If the pastor doesn’t elect a specific amount each year, based on approval by Annual Conference, each year the clergy person’s UMPIP election will be increased by a percentage point until the percentage gets to 10%. The clergy person can elect to not have the election auto escalate, but this election must be made with every appointment change.

Fill out the UMPIP Election form and return it to the Benefits Office. 

Log into Benefits Access. Click on Accounts. In Accounts you will see a Retirement Contributions section. Click on that link and it will take you to a new page to show you your current election.

You should fill out a new UMPIP Election form with every new appointment. You can also change it at any point during the year based on your circumstances. 

Health Insurance - Clergy and Lay Participants

Each participant will have coverage as of their effective date (generally July 1 or January 1). You can log into the Benefits Access to find a temporary insurance card while you wait for your physical card. It generally takes 10 days after the beginning of the month for the card to arrive. 

Cards are mailed out once the participant's record is updated (the first Thursday of the month) and it will take 7-10 business days for delivery.

Participants can log into Benefits Access to print a temporary card. Participants can also call the Health and Wellness Team at 800-851-2201, option 2 then 0.

For instructions on accessing Benefits Access, please see the instructions found here.

DENTAL benefits are provided by Cigna.  Please note that Cigna will not be mailing ID cards to members of the dental plan. You may download an ID card by going to www.myCigna.com. On the card you will find your personal identification number.  Without a personal identification number, your social security number will be sufficient. For assistance or to have questions answered, the Cigna customer service number is 1-(800) 244-6224.

VISION benefits come from VSP – Vision Service Providers. There are now two levels of coverage for vision benefits – VSP Exam Core, and VSP Full Service. The Exam Core is the basic level of coverage that’s included in the benefit package of all active HF participants at no cost. The Full Service level is an optional choice that participants make at the time of being a New Hire or during the Annual Election period. To locate a VSP doctor in network, visit www.VSP.com or call 1-(800) 877-7195 for additional information.

Health Insurance - Churches

Insurance payments are made at the beginning of the month. Wespath covers participants through the end of the month in which there is a termination, so the expense is not prorated.

If you have not set up your Data Services account, you must do that first by following the directions found here for logging into Data Services. Once that is done, if the link doesn’t work, you can view the monthly invoice by logging into Data Services account and clicking on the Benefits button. This will take you to a new screen where you will see a drop down from which you can choose the current month’s invoice.

When the payments are made on-line the payments aren’t automatically applied to the account as the on-line system is separate from the bank. Once the payments are applied to the bank account, the payments are recorded by the accounting department. If the amount does not show up in seven business days, please contact Bruce Cooper, Conference Controller, at bcooper@ngumc.org.


The first step in retirement is notifying the Bishop and your DS that you are planning to retire. This is done via email or letter. Once the Bishop has been notified the Benefits Office inputs your retirement date into Wespath and they contact you about your retirement options for your pension distributions. 

In order to receive the retiree benefit, Medicare plans must be chosen through ViaBenefits. They have qualified advisors who can help you choose your plan. 

The resolutions pertaining to the housing allowance can be found in the Journal for the year prior to the current tax year. For example, the resolution for the 2020 tax year can be found in the 2019 journal. In addition, Wespath has provided instructions, found here and here, that will aid in preparing your tax return and designating pension benefits as housing.