Insurance Definitions

Whether you’re insuring your first car, a long-time homeowner or somewhere in between,  insurance terminology can be confusing. Knowing these terms will help you understand your coverage and the insurance process.

Additional Living Expenses

If you can’t live in your home because of a covered loss, your insurance company may pay the necessary increase in living expenses while damage is assessed and your home is repaired or rebuilt.

Broad Form Liability Coverage

Helps protect you from expenses related to injuries or property damage you or your watercraft cause in an accident. Some policies also cover certain accidental fuel spill liabilities and wreckage removal.


CLUE (Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange) is a claims history database that enables insurance companies to access customer claims information when they are underwriting or rating an insurance policy. It typically contains up to five years of your personal auto or personal property claims history.

You can order your personal CLUE report from LexisNexis Personal Reports online or by calling 866-312-8076.

In addition, you may request a CLUE report from the seller of a home you are purchasing.

Collision Coverage

Pays to repair damages to your auto, classic auto, motorcycle or RV caused by an accident. Your agent will help you determine the limits you need based on the agreed value of your vehicle.

Comprehensive Coverage

Pays to repair or replace your vehicle if it is stolen, vandalized or damaged in some way other than in a collision. May include loss from fire, cracked windshields, floods, falling objects and wind.

Custom Parts & Equipment Coverage

Many motorcycle owners like to customize their rides, and some policies include coverage for custom parts and equipment, often at no extra charge. If your motorcycle is customized, it’s important for you to tell your agent.


When you get insurance, you agree to pay up to a certain amount when a loss occurs before your insurance kicks in. This amount is your deductible. The deductible you choose often affects how much you pay for your premium. For example, a higher deductible usually means a lower premium. In the case of a covered loss, you’ll only be required to pay your deductible, then the insurance company usually covers the rest, up to the limit for that loss specified in your policy. 

Emergency & Roadside Assistance

For auto, boat and personal watercraft, emergency assistance pays for the cost of towing or emergency service. For RVs, it also covers housing and transportation costs if your RV becomes uninhabitable (you can’t stay in it) and covers the loss of personal property in your RV. Some policies also provide roadside assistance for motorcycles.

Excess Liability

Sometimes used interchangeably with umbrella coverage, excess liability refers to coverage that is meant to supplement your regular insurance coverage if the damages exceed your liability limit. 

Fidelity Coverage

Companies and businesses often purchase fidelity coverage to protect them against loss from employee dishonesty, such as theft of money, equipment or other assets.

Identity Theft

Identity theft is when someone steals your personal information and uses it to open accounts or incur charges without your permission. Thieves can access your personal information in a variety of ways, such as stealing your personal mail, your wallet or hacking your computer files. The thief then uses your identity to rack up debt in your name or perhaps to issue fake IDs. Click here to learn more about identity theft.


Providing indemnity means to financially restore someone after a loss, through payment, repair or replacement.

Insurance Score

A Credit Based Insurance Score is derived from information on your credit report. It is a number that measures likelihood of having an insurance claim — not a measure of credit worthiness. Insurers use your CBIS along with a number of other factors, including driving records, claims history, and the type of home or vehicle owned, to evaluate new and renewal auto and homeowner insurance policies.

Medical Coverage | Homeowners Insurance

Covers medical expenses for guests if they are injured on your property, and in certain cases covers people who are injured off of your property. It does not cover healthcare costs for you or other members of your household.

Medical Coverage | Auto, Boat and Personal Watercraft, Motorcycle or RV Insurance

Provides for your passenger and your medical expenses that are the result of an accident.

Liability & Personal Liability Coverage

For homeowners, this coverage applies if someone is injured or property is damaged and you are to blame. The coverage applies anywhere in the world. When choosing liability coverage for your home, auto, boat, personal watercraft, or RV, consider things like how much money you make and what you own. Your liability coverage should be high enough to protect your belongings if you are sued.

Personal Property Coverage

Your home is filled with furniture, clothes, sports equipment and other items that you worked hard to acquire and mean a lot to you. This coverage helps repair or replace these items if they are lost, stolen or destroyed as a result of an insured event.

Personal Watercraft (PWC)

A personal watercraft (PWC) is a recreational watercraft that the rider sits or stands on, rather than inside of, as in a boat. Models have an inboard engine driving a pump jet that has a screw-shaped impeller to create thrust for propulsion and steering.

Physical Damage Coverage for Watercraft

Pays to repair the damage done to your watercraft due to an accident. It also generally pays to repair or replace your watercraft for insured situations such as theft, fire, vandalism or other non-collision damages that occur in or out of the water


Simply put, the premium is the amount you pay for your insurance.

Property or Dwelling Coverage

Typically pays to repair or rebuild your home if it’s damaged or destroyed by an insured event.

Scheduled Personal Property Coverage

If you have special possessions such as jewelry, art, antiques or collectibles, you may want to talk to your agent about this additional coverage.

Umbrella Insurance

Umbrella insurance is the coverage that may kick in when your losses under other insurance policies, such as homeowner’s and auto coverage, have exceeded policy limits. Click here to learn more.  


Underwriting is the process of assessing risks when deciding whether to issue an insurance policy. The underwriter is the person who does that assessment.

Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage

This coverage pays for damages associated with bodily injury or death from an accident caused by an at-fault uninsured, underinsured or hit-and-run driver, as defined by the law in the jurisdiction where the accident occurred. It also covers you if you are hit by a vehicle as a pedestrian.

Unattached Equipment Coverage

This coverage pays to repair or replace equipment that isn’t permanently attached to your boat or personal watercraft. This includes items like life jackets and water-skis.

Contact Us

Questions about Insurance?