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A Guide To General Insurance – The Many Policy Types Are Discussed.

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General insurance includes most insurance except life insurance. There are three main kinds of general insurance: personal, commercial and London Market insurance.

This article now goes onto discuss a wide variety of insurance types, covered under general insurance with a description for each.

Personal insurance

Personal insurance products are designed more for mass consumption and include policies to cover the home, car, pets, health, travel and so on.

Home insurance covers contents as well as buildings. Protection is given against damage caused by fire, flood, earthquake and adverse weather conditions, as well as cover of possessions through loss, theft or accidental damage.

Motor insurance usually comes as ‘comprehensive’ so even if it is the driver’s fault, the car is covered. Third party, fire and theft cover is much more limited. Premiums are based on risk factors such as address, age and a history of no claims. Of all the different types of policies available, car insurance accounts for the majority of general insurance policies.

Travel insurance provides cover for loss of baggage, cancellations, health and a range of risks while travelling outside the country.

Private medical insurance provides cover for private healthcare services and loss of earnings when sick. Dental policies are available too. Cover is also available for personal accident.

Pet insurance covers veterinary bills and other expenses that pets might incur.

Accident, sickness, or unemployment insurance protects your income, mortgage or loan payments (also known as payment protection insurance).

Critical illness insurance and long-term care insurance protects you should you fall critically sick and if you need special care.

Commercial insurance

Commercial insurance is insurance for businesses. This might include workers’ compensation policies (employers’ liability), public and product liability, commercial fleet and other insurance cover.

General liability insurance protects a business against loss in the event of accidents, personal injuries, and negligence. General liability insurance protects the policy holders from costs incurred for items like legal fees, medical bills, property damage, etc

Property liability insurance covers damages payable which are caused by liability issues with manufacturer’s products. Companies such as distributors, retailers and wholesalers insure this type of policy to protect in case of third party injury.

Professional liability insurance protects policy holders against claims and accusations (sometimes false) of malpractice. This policy specifically protects where the claim occured whilst providing professional services. Doctors and other medical practitioners usually have to carrying professional liability insurance as a requirement in order to practice their profession.

Commercial property insurance covers property damages and losses specifically covering commercial property. These could include for example damages caused by criminal damage, natural disasters (e.g. earthquakes, tornados, etc), theft, etc. Claims can also be for loss of income associated with property, also lost income/profit, lost intellectual property (e.g. company documentation) as well as the more obvious damages to physical buildings. Policy holders can cover on an all-risk policy basis (this cover a wide range of possible damages) or risk-specific policies (individual items of insurance risk only covered).

Worker’s compensation is a policy held by many companies. This protects the company from injuries at work and lost wages and medical bills arising from such injuries (a classic example is dust inhalation claims causing cancer and other claims from Coal Miners).

Home-based business insurance allows the ever growing number of homeworkers to insureitems that a standard home insurance policy doesn’t cover. Examples might be loss of business or loss of documentation.

Internet business insurance is very useful for businesses that have large exposure to issues associated with the Internet. Examples could be damages caused by hackers, intellectual property theft and/or computer viruses/malware.

Key person insurance is typically a policy in place where a business depends on one or two persons for continuity of trade. In the event of a key person’s death the policy provisions would come into place.

Marine cargo insurance covers any type of goods transported on the water, by air, or by road protecting them from theft or damage.

London Market insurance

The London market insures the larger commercial risks like supermarkets, football players and other very specific risks. The London Market is made up of insurers, reinsurers, brokers and other companies that usually have their offices located in the City of London, often within the Lloyd’s building itself. Lloyd’s of London is a main participant in this market. The London Market is also involved with personal and commercial lines, domestic and foreign, through reinsurance.Lloyd’s building (from Leadenhall Street).

Image Credits: Wikipedia1 and Wikipedia2.

With so much choice, it is well worth shopping around. If you are looking for a job in General Insurance, a specialist recruitment website certainly worth a visit is Idex Consulting. Key points to consider when deciding what insurance is best for you is how suitable is it for your particular needs, cost, flexibility if you miss a payment or wish to cancel or switch, and the terms like when does the policy pay out and whether there are restrictions.

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