A method of providing monetary compensation for a misfortune or loss that may not occur. Events that must occur at some time, such as death, are provided for by assurance. In the UK and some other countries insurance against unemployment, sickness, and retirement is provided by the government (See National Insurance). Other types of insurance are undertaken by the private sector, either by insurance companies or by Lloyd's. Almost any risk can be insured against, the most common being marine insurance; aviation insurance; motor insurance; fire, burglary, and household insurance; private medical insurance; and weather insurance.
The public does not deal directly with the underwriters (insurers) but arranges to cover a risk through an insurance broker, who works for a commission paid by the insurer and advises the client as to the best cover available, taking into account the cost and reliability of the insurer. Claims are also settled through brokers. The cost to the insured of covering the risk (premium) is calculated by the insurer's actuary on the basis of the probability of the risk occurring. If the event occurs the insured's claim is paid by the insurer, as calculated by an insurance assessor or as stipulated in the insurance policy. See also credit insurance.Go to STAT!Ref to use the Diagnosis or Procedure Conversion Tools.
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