EARLY WARNING SYSTEM - EARLY WARNING SYSTEM A system of measuring insurers‘ financial stability set up by insurance industry regulators. An example is the Insurance Regulatory Information System (IRIS), which uses financial ratios to identify insurers in need of regulatory attention.
EARNED PREMIUM - The portion of premium that applies to the expired part of the policy period. Insurance premiums are payable in advance but the insurance company does not fully earn them until the policy period expires.
EARTHQUAKE INSURANCE - Covers a building and its contents, but includes a large percentage deductible on each. A special policy or endorsement exists because earthquakes are not covered by standard homeowners or most business policies.
ECONOMIC LOSS - Total financial loss resulting from the death or disability of a wage earner, or from the destruction of property. Includes the loss of earnings, medical expenses, funeral expenses, the cost of restoring or replacing property and legal expenses. It does not include noneconomic losses, such as pain caused by an injury.
ELECTRONIC COMMERCE / E-COMMERCE - The sale of products such as insurance over the Internet.
ELIMINATION PERIOD - A kind of deductible or waiting period usually found in disability policies. It is counted in days from the beginning of the illness or injury.
EMPLOYEE RETIREMENT INCOME SECURITY ACT / ERISA - Federal legislation that protects employees by establishing minimum standards for private pension and welfare plans.
EMPLOYMENT PRACTICES LIABILITY COVERAGE - Liability insurance for employers that covers wrongful termination, discrimination and other violations of employees‘ legal rights.
ENDORSEMENT - A written form attached to an insurance policy that alters the policy‘s coverage, terms, or conditions. Sometimes called a rider.
ENDOWMENT INSURANCE* - Life insurance that provides a policy benefit payable either when the insured dies or on a stated date if the insured is still alive on that date.
ENVIRONMENTAL IMPAIRMENT LIABILITY COVERAGE - A form of insurance designed to cover losses and liabilities arising from damage to property caused by pollution.
EQUITY - In investments, the ownership interest of shareholders. In a corporation, stocks as opposed to bonds.
EQUITY INDEXED ANNUITY - Nontraditional fixed annuity. The specified rate of interest guarantees a fixed minimum rate of interest like traditional fixed annuities. At the same time, additional interest may be credited to policy values based upon positive changes, if any, in an established index such as the S&P 500. The amount of additional interest depends upon the particular design of the policy. They are sold by licensed insurance agents and regulated by state insurance departments.
ERRORS AND OMISSIONS COVERAGE / E&O - A professional liability policy covering the policyholder for negligent acts and omissions that may harm his or her clients.
ESCROW ACCOUNT - Funds that a lender collects to pay monthly premiums in mortgage and homeowners insurance, and sometimes to pay property taxes.
EXCESS AND SURPLUS LINES - Property/casualty coverage that isn‘t available from insurers licensed by the state (called admitted insurers) and must be purchased from a nonadmitted carrier.
EXCESS OF LOSS REINSURANCE - A contract between an insurer and a reinsurer, whereby the insurer agrees to pay a specified portion of a claim and the reinsurer to pay all or a part of the claim above that amount.
EXCLUSION - A provision in an insurance policy that eliminates coverage for certain risks, people, property classes, or locations.
EXCLUSIVE REMEDY - Part of the social contract that forms the basis for workers compensation statutes under which employers are responsible for work-related injury and disease, regardless of whether it was the employee‘s fault and in return the injured employee gives up the right to sue when the employer‘s negligence causes the harm.
EXPENSE RATIO - Percentage of each premium dollar that goes to insurers‘ expenses including overhead, marketing and commissions.
EXPERIENCE - Record of losses.
EXPOSURE - Possibility of loss.
EXTENDED COVERAGE - An endorsement added to an insurance policy, or clause within a policy, that provides additional coverage for risks other than those in a basic policy.
EXTENDED REPLACEMENT COST COVERAGE - Pays a certain amount above the policy limit to replace a damaged home, generally 120 percent or 125 percent. Similar to a guaranteed replacement cost policy, which has no percentage limits. Most homeowner policy limits track inflation in building costs. Guaranteed and extended replacement cost policies are designed to protect the policyholder after a major disaster when the high demand for building contractors and materials can push up the normal cost of reconstruction. (See Guaranteed replacement cost coverage )
EXTENDED TERM INSURANCE OPTION* - One of several nonforfeiture options included in life insurance policies that allows the owner of a policy with a cash value to discontinue premium payments and to use the policy‘s net cash value to purchase term insurance for the full coverage amount provided under the original policy for as long a term as the net cash value can provide. (See Nonforfeiture options )
Computerized patient health records, including medical, demographic, and administrative information. These records can be created and stored within one organization or shared across multiple health care organizations and sites.
Enacted in 1974 to provide minimum Federal standards for welfare benefit plans in private industry, and protect the interests of employee benefit plan participants and their beneficiaries by requiring the disclosure to them of financial and other information concerning the plan; by establishing standards of conduct for plan fiduciaries; and by providing for appropriate remedies and access to the Federal courts.
Beginning in 2014 pursuant to the health reform law, employers meeting size or revenue thresholds will be required to offer minimum essential health benefit packages or pay a set portion of the cost of those benefits for use in the Exchanges.
Refers to all the health services related to the treatment of a condition. For acute conditions (such as a concussion or a broken bone), the episode includes all treatment and services from the onset of the condition to its resolution. For chronic conditions (such as diabetes), the episode refers to all services and treatments received over a given period of time. Some payment reform proposals involve basing provider payment on episodes of care instead of paying on a Fee-for-Service basis.
The health reform law placed certain coverage requirements on essential health benefits, and provides a broad set of benefit categories that would be considered essential to a health benefits package -- including hospitalization, outpatient services, emergency care, prescription drugs, maternity care, preventive services and other benefits. The Secretary of HHS will, in the future, define what constitutes \Essential Health Benefits\ and this will be guided by the current scope of benefits provided under a typical employer plan. For plan years beginning in 2010 the only requirement for \Essential Health Benefits\ is that if they are included in the plan they may not be subject to a lifetime limit and until 2014 can only be subject to a \restricted annual limit\.
The health care reform law creates Health Benefit Exchanges (competitive insurance marketplaces) in each state, where individuals and employers can shop for health plans.
Health care reform requires all health plans (except Grandfathered plans) to provide an external review appeal process that meets minimum standards. With the exception of a few state processes currently in existence, external review has typically been limited to appeals of clinical decisions. The health reform law has expanded the scope of external review for self-funded health plans to non-eligibility administrative appeals as well. Administrative appeals deal with such issues as benefit exclusions, benefit limits and disputes over member financial responsibility for payments such as Co-payments, Co-insurance and Deductibles.