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Insurance Terms – Explained

Decoding Insurance Jargon: Simplified!


We have all been there, trying to get insurance for your car, house or vacation and the agent throws some insurance terms your way that you really are not sure what all of them mean.  Take a look at this list for quick and simple explanations to remedy any uncertainty in the future.

Insurance terms

Insurance Terms:


An adjuster works for the insurance company and helps determine the extent of your loss or damage when you submit a claim.


The notification you submit to your insurance company when you experience a loss or damages to your property.


This refers to the protection provided by your insurance policy.


When you have a claim, the deductible is the amount that you pay out first, then your insurer covers the remaining cost.

Deduction for depreciation

This refers to the loss of the original value of an item due to age, wear and tear or because it’s obsolete.


A lowering in value over time, usually due to wear and tear.

Effective date

The date that your insurance policy takes effect.

Excluded driver

Someone who isn’t covered by your auto insurance policy.


This refers to any losses or events that aren’t covered by your insurance policy.

Guaranteed replacement cost

Your damaged property will be replaced, no matter how much it costs in today’s economy.


Similar to an exclusion, a limitation is an exception to your coverage that applies under certain circumstances or for a specified period of time.

Limitation period

If you were to take legal action against an insurance company, you’d have a certain period of time in which to do it. This time period varies depending on what province you live in.

Named insured

The person who’s been issued the insurance policy.

Personal liability

Property or not. A common reason for getting sued is if someone gets hurt while they’re at your home.


A legal document that details your insurance coverage, along with its terms and conditions.


The amount that you pay for your insurance coverage.

Replacement cost

The cost to repair or replace your home or personal belongings, including labor and materials, without any deduction for depreciation.

Seasonal dwelling

A dwelling (often a vacation home) that’s only occupied for a portion of the year.

Specialty belongings

Specialty belongings include: Jewelry, watches, gems, furs, collectibles (including sports cards, comic books, sports memorabilia, rare or signed books, coins and stamps) and silverware.

Total combined limit

The maximum amount that can be paid out on your specialty belongings.


A VIN or Vehicle Identification Number is like a fingerprint for your vehicle. It’s a unique 17-character code that tells you where and when the vehicle was manufactured. It can typically be found on your vehicle’s dashboard on the driver’s side, on the driver’s side door post and inside the driver’s side door.

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