Understanding Insurance Terms and Definitions – A Comprehensive Guide

Insurance can be a complex topic to understand, with a multitude of terms and jargons that can be overwhelming to new policyholders. In this article, we aim to simplify the terminology and provide a clear understanding of the common insurance terms and definitions.

Types of Insurance

There are several types of insurance, each designed to protect policyholders against different types of risks. The most common forms of insurance are:

Insurance Type
Life Insurance
Covers the risk of death and provides financial support to the nominee.
Health Insurance
Covers the cost of medical treatment and hospitalization expenses.
Auto Insurance
Covers the cost of damages or loss caused by an accident, theft, or natural calamity.
Home Insurance
Covers the cost of damages caused by theft, fire, natural calamity, and other hazards.

Each insurance type has its own set of terms and definitions that are relevant to the policy. Understanding these terms is crucial when deciding which insurance policy to purchase.

Insurance Terms and Definitions


A premium is the amount paid by the policyholder to the insurance company for coverage. It is usually paid monthly, quarterly, or annually. The premium amount is determined by the policy coverage, risk factors, and other relevant factors.


A deductible is the amount that the policyholder must pay out of pocket before the insurance coverage kicks in. Generally, higher the deductible, the lower the premium. It is important to choose a deductible amount that is affordable and feasible.


A claim is a request made by the policyholder for coverage against damages or loss. The policyholder must submit proof of the loss to the insurance company to initiate the claim process.

Policy Limit

Policy limit is the maximum amount that the insurance company will pay for damages or loss. The policyholder must choose the policy limit based on their requirements and affordability. If the damage exceeds the policy limit, then the policyholder will have to bear the excess amount.


Exclusions are the conditions or events that are not covered under the insurance policy. It is important to read the policy document carefully to understand the exclusions and limitations of the coverage.


A rider is an add-on to the insurance policy that provides additional coverage for specific events or conditions. Riders may increase the premium, but they can provide crucial coverage in case of unforeseen events.


What is the minimum age to purchase insurance?

The minimum age to purchase insurance varies depending on the type of insurance and the insurer. Generally, life insurance can be purchased by individuals over 18 years of age, while health insurance can be purchased by individuals over 21 years of age.

How can I reduce my insurance premium?

There are several ways to reduce insurance premiums, such as choosing a higher deductible, maintaining a good credit score, and installing safety devices in home or vehicles. It is important to discuss the options with the insurance agent to find the best possible solution.

What is a waiting period in health insurance?

A waiting period is the period of time after purchasing health insurance during which the policyholder is not eligible for coverage for certain conditions. The waiting period varies depending on the insurer and the policy.

Can I cancel my insurance policy?

Yes, insurance policies can be cancelled by the policyholder. If the policyholder cancels the policy before the end of the term, then they may be subjected to penalties or cancellation fees.

What documents do I need to submit while making a claim?

The documents required for making a claim vary depending on the type of insurance and the insurer. Generally, the policyholder must submit proof of loss, such as bills, receipts, and police reports. It is important to read the policy document carefully to understand the claim process and the required documents.

Insurance is a crucial investment that provides financial protection against unforeseen events. It is important to understand the terms and definitions of the insurance policy to make informed decisions and choose the best possible coverage.