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Basic Tennessee Auto Insurance Terminology

Underinsured Motorist Bodily Injury Coverage:
Coverage that pays for your bodily injury and related medical expenses when you're injured in an automobile accident and the responsible party (other than yourself) doesn't have adequate auto insurance.
Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury Coverage:
Coverage that pays for your bodily injury and related medical expenses when you're injured in an automobile accident and the responsible party (other than yourself) doesn't have auto accident insurance or can't be located (hit-and-run).
Vehicle Identification Number (VIN):
Your vehicle's serial number assigned by the manufacturer. The VIN identifies the year, make, model, options and other information that are unique to your specific vehicle.
At Fault:
The degree to which you caused or contributed to an accident, or are "at fault," and determines whose auto insurance company pays what portion of the damages. The method by which this is determined varies from state to state.
Bodily Injury Coverage:
If you are at fault for an automobile accident, bodily injury coverage, or an auto insurance policy, pays the medical expenses and additional damages for which you are liable for other individuals injured in the accident.
Liability Coverage:
Coverage for damages your auto accident causes to others and their property.
Claim:
When you suffer a loss that's covered by your insurance, such as an automobile accident, you submit a request to your auto insurance company to pay or reimburse you for expenses, damages, and other financial obligations.
Claims Adjuster:
A representative of an auto insurance company who investigates and settles claims to ensure that all parties—you, your auto insurance company, and any else involved—receive fair compensation.
Collision Coverage:
Coverage that pays for physical damage to your vehicle caused by rolling over or a collision with another vehicle or object, such as a building, fence or telephone pole.
Covered Loss:
Any damage to yourself, your vehicle, or other people or property that is covered under your insurance policy.
Exclusions:
Specifically identified situations that are not covered by your auto insurance policy.
Deductible:
The portion of a covered loss for which you are responsible, as opposed to the portion your insurance company pays. A higher deductible allows your insurance company to offer you lower premiums, as you assume responsibility for a larger amount of loss.
Declaration Page (Dec Page):

An auto insurance coverage summary that lists the following:

  • Types of coverage you have elected
  • Costs for each coverage
  • Specified vehicles covered by the policy
  • Types of coverage for each vehicle covered by the policy
  • Other information applicable to the policy
Medical Payments (MedPay) Coverage:
This is an optional insurance coverage that pays for reasonable and necessary medical and funeral expenses for a person covered by the policy. These expenses must be incurred as a result of an auto accident.
Named Person:
The first person in whose name the insurance policy is issued.
Occasional Driver:
A person who is not the primary or principal driver of the insured vehicle is an occasional driver.
Principal Driver:
The person who drives the car most often is the principal driver.
Property Damage Liability Coverage (PD):
If an insured person is legally liable for an accident, PD coverage pays for damage to others' property resulting from the accident. PD also pays for legal defense costs if you are sued—but certain exclusions may apply.

Written by Adrienne Waters Ogle

Attorney Adrienne Ogle is an awarding-winning Sevierville personal injury attorney serving clients throughout East Tennessee. She is a partner at Green, Waters Ogle and McCarter and has dedicated her career to protecting the rights of her clients and their families.