IFA Jargon Buster

The world of finance can be confusing. If you're unsure of some technical terms, explore our handy jargon buster to see the definition.

A limited liability company in which anyone can buy shares and whose shares are available to buy and sell, usually on a stock exchange. A 'PLC' is owned by its shareholders.

A policy for businesses that provides cover against claims made by individuals for injuries suffered by them or for damage done to their property.

A term used by those working in the life insurance sector. It means the same as 'insurance'.

Another name for the application form you complete to take out an insurance policy.

This policy protects professionals against their legal liability towards third parties for injury, loss or damage arising from their own professional negligence or that of the employees of the insured's company.

Insurance to cover the cost of private medical treatment should you suffer one of the medical conditions specified under the policy. This can provide quicker access to treatment than health service waiting lists.

Calculated by dividing the market price of a company's ordinary shares by its earnings-per-share figure. It provides an indicator of a company's performance potential.

The payments you make to a provider for your insurance policy, pension or investment plan. This could be a one-off payment, or on an annual or (most commonly) a monthly basis.

The term given to any health issues you have prior to starting a life insurance policy, private medical insurance or travel insurance policy. The insurer will calculate how likely it is that your condition will affect your life expectancy or general health and price your premiums accordingly. It is very important that you disclose any existing medical conditions during the policy application process otherwise it could invalidate any future claim.

The collective term for all your investments, properties, insurance, etc.

An investment arrangement where lots of investors' contributions are 'pooled' together to create a larger investment. Examples include investment trusts, unit trusts and OEICs.

This details how much cover you have (the sum insured), the discount you qualify for (if any), and the premiums you will have to pay under an insurance policy. With some policies, you may receive a new schedule at each renewal or whenever you want to change the policy.

The amount you will have to pay of any insurance claim. For example, this may be the first £50 of a £500 claim for damage caused by a storm. An excess can be voluntary to obtain a reduced premium or imposed for underwriting reasons.

The facility to use small segments of your pension to buy annuities, or for drawdown purposes, as and when you need more income, rather than using your entire pension fund.

See Income Protection Cover.

A pension scheme for individuals or employees, or those who are self-employed, that are not members of an occupational scheme.

A specific source of loss (such as fire, theft or liability) which may be covered by an insurance policy.

A service provided by the Social Security Division of the Isle of Man Government Treasury Department which tells you, free of charge, what your State Pension is worth. A similar facility for UK residents is provided by the Department of Work and Pensions.

The amount of money you can take from your pension plan as a tax-free lump sum when you retire. Most pension plans will allow you to take up to 25% as a tax-free lump sum (30% for most Isle of Man contracts). Also referred to as Tax-Free Cash.

This policy pays out a certain level of monthly tax-free income should you be unable to work due to illness, an accident or being made redundant.

The system in the UK by which income tax and National Insurance contributions are collected from your salary by your employer, before it is paid to you, and passed to HMRC. The corresponding system in the Isle of Man is ITIP (Income Tax Instalment Payments).

A term used to describe a pension when no further contributions are expected.