Tools and ResourcesGlossary

When you're thinking about buying insurance, it's important to understand the language. For instance, what is a deductible? What does "premium" mean? What's the difference between an agent and an adjuster?

Terms

If you're looking for helpful, easy-to-understand information on some common insurance concepts, you've come to the right place. Click the appropriate letter of the alphabet below for info on insurance-related terms.

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Agent

A representative of an insurance company who sells insurance policies, is licensed by the state and is required to complete continuing education classes.

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Amendment

A change to the provisions of an insurance policy contract.

Auto loan calculator

An automated tool that helps estimate auto loan payments. Some companies such as financial and consumer credit institutions offer auto loan calculators on their websites for consumers so they can estimate their car payments by entering variables such as vehicle cost, interest rate and the length of the loan.

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Bond

A security representing the debt of the company or government issuing it. When a company or government issues a bond, it borrows money from you and you would then be considered a bondholder; it then uses the money to invest in its operations. In exchange, the company or government promises to repay you (the bondholder) the amount you invest, plus interest, at a set point in time called a maturity date.

Car payment calculator

See "Auto loan calculator".

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Related terms: auto loan calculator

Carrier

Term used to refer to the company that issues your insurance policy.

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Claim

A request to an insurance company for recovery for a loss.

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Coverage

The protection provided in an insurance policy.

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Damage

Harm or injury to an individual or property.

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Deductible

The portion of a covered loss you pay before the insurance company becomes responsible for payment under the policy.

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Related terms: premium

Driver

One who operates a motor vehicle.

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Endorsement

A change to the coverage or terms provided in your insurance policy.

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Estate

The general term used to refer to all the assets an individual owns, such as real estate, art collections, jewelry, investments and life insurance.

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Loss

Value of damage to a person or property.

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Mortgage Calculator

An automated tool that helps estimate mortgage payments. Some companies such as financial and consumer credit institutions offer calculators on websites where mortgage shoppers can quickly estimate their loan payment by entering variables such as home cost, interest rate and length of the loan.

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Net worth

The difference between assets and liabilities. This number, which applies to both individuals and businesses, is a key measure of how much an entity or a person possesses. In business, net worth is also known as book value or shareholders' equity.

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Policy

A written contract for insurance between you and your company.

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Related terms: premium, deductible

Premium

The amount paid to procure coverage from an insurance company.

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Related terms: deductible, policy

Principal

The amount of money you invest.

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Rider

See "Endorsement."

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Risk

An exposure of loss or harm to your property, or your potential legal responsibility.

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Scheduled personal property coverage

Extended optional insurance coverage for high-value appraised personal property that can be added to a homeowners, renters or condo policy.

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Stock

An investment that represents ownership in a corporation.

Trust

A legal arrangement whereby control over property is transferred to a person or organization (the trustee) for the benefit of someone else (the beneficiary). Trusts are created for a variety of reasons, including tax savings and improved asset management.

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Will

A legal document containing a person's wishes for his or her property and assets upon death. Unlike trusts, wills are subject to probate proceedings and become public at time of death.

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Coverage subject to terms, conditions, and availability. Policy issuance is subject to qualifications. Allstate Insurance Company, Allstate Indemnity Company, Allstate Fire and Casualty Insurance Company, Allstate Property and Casualty Insurance Company, Northbrook, IL. © 2014 Allstate Insurance Company, Northbrook, IL.

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