manulife financial



Glossary of insurance terms

Here is a list of some of the frequently used insurance terms found throughout the pages of this Web site. If you can't find a term you would like defined in the alphabetical list below, feel free to call us at 1-888-913-6333 Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET or e-mail any time. We would be happy to help you with any insurance questions you may have.

All definitions provided are examples. Consult your policy or certificate of insurance for the terms that apply to your coverage.

For a definition, click on the letter that the insurance term begins with:



Accident Insurance
Provides benefits if the person insured is injured as a direct result of an accident, and not by any other cause.

Depending on the policy or certificate of insurance, either your actual age or your age as of a specified date (i.e., the policy anniversary date) may be used when determining your eligibility for coverage, your premiums or your termination date.

A signed document of personal and health-related information supplied by a person applying for insurance. An insurer uses the information on the application (and sometimes additional information the insurer requests) to decide whether or not to provide coverage to that person.

Association Group
A group formed of members from an association who have applied for group insurance under one insurance contract between the association and an insurer.B

The person, other than the insured or the insured's estate, to whom or for whose benefit, insurance money is made payable by contract or designation.

The amounts paid to a claimant or beneficiary under the coverage of a policy or certificate of insurance. C

The termination of coverage when, at the request of the insured or by the right of the insurer, the insurance coverage is made void before its normal expiration date.

A document issued to a group member insured under a group insurance policy.

A request for benefit payment under the terms of an insurance policy or certificate of insurance.

The person(s) making a request for payment of benefits under the terms of an insurance policy or certificate of insurance.

Another term for the protection offered under an insurance policy. Coverage is used interchangeably with the terms insurance or protection.D

Death Benefit
The amount of money paid to a beneficiary when a person insured under a life insurance policy dies.

Death Claim
A request for payment under the terms of a life insurance policy when an insured person dies. E

Effective Date
The date when insurance coverage begins.

Specific causes of death, circumstances and health-related conditions or any other losses for which an insurance policy does not provide benefits.

Extended Health and Dental Insurance
Health and dental benefits provided under an insurance policy. Benefits may include payment for prescription drugs, vision care and optional dental care and treatment.F

Face Amount
The dollar amount of the coverage in force. This amount is often shown on the first page of a policy or certificate. In a life insurance policy or certificate, this is the amount payable to a beneficiary when an insured person dies.G

Grace Period
A period of time which acts as a cushion to ensure coverage is not cancelled if a payment of premium is missed. If a payment is not received within this period of time (or grace period) from the date a payment is due, the insurance policy is cancelled.

Group Insurance
A single policy which has been issued to a group or association, whereby members of the group can apply for coverage under the group policy.

Guaranteed Issue
An insurance plan for mature Canadians that guarantees insurance coverage regardless of health. Rates are based in part on age at the time of application. I

A person and/or other parties covered under the terms of an insurance policy or certificate of insurance.

The company providing the insurance coverage (e.g., Manulife Financial).P

The legal document issued by an insurance company to a policyholder, which outlines the conditions and terms of the insurance.

Policyowner or Policyholder
The person, group or association who owns the insurance policy.

The cost of insurance coverage. A premium can be paid monthly or annually.

The insurance provided under the terms of an insurance policy. Also referred to as coverage. T

Term Life Insurance
A life insurance plan that provides coverage for a specified number of years. For instance, an individual can purchase a 10-year term life insurance plan and pay the same premium amount each year for the duration of the term. After 10 years, the coverage can be renewed at a higher price or cancelled. If the insured survives the stated period, the insurance policy or certificate of insurance expires without any value. U

The person or company which decides the risk level of a potential insured applying for insurance protection. Also, the person or company that ensures money is available to pay for claims under the insurance policy. Manulife Financial is the underwriter of the insurance plans described on this Web site.

Underwriting Requirements
The requirements used to assess whether an insured is eligible for insurance coverage. A person’s age, the amount of coverage requested, medical records and physical examinations are generally used to decide if an insured will pass the underwriting requirements necessary for the insurance coverage and amount they have applied for.
Have we missed an insurance term that you would like defined? Let us know by calling 1-888-913-6333 Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET or e-mail any time.