Automobile Insurance Facts InfographicUtah’s Insurance Code defines “insured” as “a person to whom or for whose benefit an insurer makes a promise in an insurance policy and includes a policyholder, a subscriber, a member, and a beneficiary.”  It also defines “policyholder” as “a person who controls a policy, binder, or oral contract by ownership, premium payment, or otherwise;” and defines “member” as “a person having membership rights in an insurance corporation.” Simply put, the insured is the person whose damages should be covered in the way laid out by whatever policy he or she decided to purchase. As Nolo’s Law Dictionary puts it “the person or entity who is covered by an insurance policy.”

Example Sentence

After buying his motorcycle, Jerry purchased an insurance policy becoming the “insured” person in the contract.

Case Study

In a Utah Court of Appeals case, Ms. Jacobsen got in an accident while working for her employer, Wagon Tongue. The employer was insured with Chubb Customer Center. Wagon Tongue was the “insured” party while Chubb Customer Center was the “insurer.” Ms. Jacobsen (insured’s employee) was driving her husband’s car, instead of the insured’s car (i.e. Wagon Tongue’s). Under the insured’s policy (i.e. Wagon Tongue’s), the insurer (i.e. Chubb Customer Center) did not have to pay for any damages that Ms. Jacobsen suffered because the car she was driving was not insured by them.

Other Important Information

The person paying for insurance should control the provisions of the contract and, necessarily, understand completely what their policy entails.  An insurance policy should be designed to serve the specific needs and wants of the insured in accordance with their will and comprehension. When insurers fail to adhere to their contractual obligations to their clients or stretch the meaning of the words beyond a reasonable limit, they are guilty of bad faith.  The American Association for Justice has compiled a list of the worst insurance companies in America, ranked for their unwillingness to pay claims, unreasonably high premiums, and other practices that prey upon the insured. Utah requires all driver’s to be insured. This does not include uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage (UM & UIM). However we strongly recommend carrying these policies since an accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver may leave you with large medical bills that the driver cannot pay for. Image courtesy of Enhance Insurance

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