The examples and perspective in this article deal primarily with the United Kingdom and do not represent a worldwide view of the subject. (September 2016) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
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General insurance or non-life insurance policies, including automobile and homeowners policies, provide payments depending on the loss from a particular financial event. General insurance is typically defined as any insurance that is not determined to be life insurance. It is called property and casualty insurance in the United States and Canada and non-life insurance in Continental Europe.
In the United Kingdom, insurance is broadly divided into three areas: personal lines, commercial lines and London market.
The London market insures large commercial risks such as supermarkets, football players and other very specific risks. It consists of a number of insurers, reinsurers, P&I Clubs, brokers and other companies that are typically physically located in the City of London. Lloyd's of London is a big participant in this market. The London market also participates in personal lines and commercial lines, domestic and foreign, through reinsurance.
Commercial lines products are usually designed for relatively small legal entities. These would include workers' compensation (employers liability), public liability, product liability, commercial fleet and other general insurance products sold in a relatively standard fashion to many organisations. There are many companies that supply comprehensive commercial insurance packages for a wide range of different industries, including shops, restaurants and hotels.
ACORD, which is the insurance industry global standards organization, has standards for personal and commercial lines and has been working with the Australian General Insurers to develop those XML standards, standard applications for insurance, and certificates of currency.
Types of general insurance
General insurance can be categorised in to following:
- Motor Insurance: Motor Insurance can be divided into two groups, two and four wheeled vehicle insurance.
- Health Insurance: Common types of health insurance includes: individual health insurance, family floater health insurance, comprehensive health insurance and critical illness insurance.
- Travel Insurance: Travel insurance can be broadly grouped into: individual travel policy, family travel policy, student travel insurance, and senior citizen health insurance.
- Home Insurance: Home insurance protects a house and its contents.
- Marine Insurance: Marine cargo insurance covers goods, freight, cargo, and other interests against loss or damage during transit by rail, road, sea and/or air.
- Commercial Insurance: Commercial insurance encompasses solutions for all sectors of the industry arising out of business operations.
The United States was the largest market for non-life insurance premiums written in 2005 followed by the European Union and Japan. Zimbabwean insurance industry is recovering following dollarization in 2009. It is one of the better performing sectors of the economy.