Glossary of insurance terms

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Ab Initio

Latin for from the beginning


Association of British Insurers. This is the governing trade body which most Insurers are members.

Beyond economic repair

Where the cost of repairing the Insured property (e.g a car) is not financially viable. Also known as a "Total Loss" or "write off".


Many Insurance companies sell their services through brokers or intermediaries. Brokers have access to a number of companies so can provide competetive rates.


The person making a claim

Comprehensive (COMP)

Covers Accidental Damage to the driver's own car in addition to Third Party, Fire & Theft cover.

Courtesy Car

This is a car which is provided by the repairing garage


The person defending a claim

Driving Other Car extension (DOC)

It will state on the certificate of Insurance if this cover is included and the specific terms. It only applies to the driver and will only provide TPO cover.


If you make a claim for damages through your own Insurance policy you will have to pay the first part of that claim - the excess. This can be a combination of both compulsory excess and voluntary excess.

Fault/Non-Fault claim

The terms fault and non-fault can be confusing. A non fault claim is simply a claim where ALL costs are recovered from someone else. If ALL costs can't be recovered, then the claim is considered fault - even if the insured party didn't cause the claim to happen.

MIB (Motor Insurance Buruea)

Motor Insurance Bureau - This is a body which the government of every European country has to establish and it is funded by UK Insurers as an Insurer of last resort. The MIB will handle claims that you are involved in where the Third Party is not Insured.

Pre-Accident Value (PAV)

This is the figure that represents what your car was worth immediately prior to being involved in an accident.

Third Party

This term refers to anyone affected by an accident, other than yourself. It may include drivers and passengers of other cars or owners of property.

Third Party Insurer

The Insurer of another vehicle involved in an accident.

Third Party Only (TPO)

Covers any claim made by a Third Party but not damage to the Driver's own car.

Third Party, Fire & Theft (TPF&T)

Covers Fire and Theft of the Drivers car in additiona to Third Party Only cover.

Total Loss

See beyond economic repair

Write Off

See beyond economic repair

Mitigation (Mitigate)

Taking action to avoid or reduce costs

Litigation (Litigate)

To file a charge against someone or bring a case to court

Indemnity (Indemnify)

This is the main principle of Insurance. Insurance exists to replace something that has been lost or damaged, and an indemnity seeks to restore the Insured person to the same financial position after the loss as immediately before.


The value of an insured item on which a claim has been paid.

Without prejudice

A term used usually in an attempt to settle a dispute (in liability) without actually admitting fault by the person/company that use them.

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