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Insurance : Introduction

  
  
  
  
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Insurance means being covered or protected against any hazards of life. It is a financial agreement that binds two people to certain obligations which is known as Policy. One who buys insurance/ gets insurance coverage is the policy holder or insured and the one who sells the policy is the insurer. From the time the insured signs the policy he/she has an obligation to pay a certain amount of money known as premium at regular intervals for a stipulated period to the insurer. In fact, insurance is a contract to pay a premium in return for which the insurer will pay compensation in certain eventualities e.g. fire, theft, motor accident, etc.

The Indian insurance industry has witnessed exceptional growth with private participation. It has a mix of public and private players both in the field of life and non-life business. This sector not only provide a protective shield to the lives and assets of the nation but also generate thousands of jobs and career opportunities.

The foremost choice to open a career in this field is to start as an insurance agent. They are the people who advice the individuals and enterprises about insurance protection to their health, life and properties and sell the policies to provide protection against financial loss. Depending on their educational qualification and strengths, the agents have a good chance of becoming an employee of the company. This industry also provide great opportunities in marketing, distribution, actuarial, underwriting operations and investing departments. 

There are about 30 insurance companies in India. The major government companies are Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC), General Insurance Corporation (GIC) and Postal Life Insurance. While LIC deals with insurance of life, GIC and its subsidiaries are concerned with non life aspects of insurance such as car, marine, accident, medical and fire insurance.

Many multinational companies have come forward in the insurance field. ICICI Prudential, Om Kotak Mahindra, Birla Sun-Life, Tata AIF Life, Reliance, HDFC Standard Life-Insurance Co., Max New York Life, SBI Life Insurance, ING Vysya Life etc. are the top companies in the private sector. In non-life insurance segment, major private players are ICICI Lombard, Royal Sundaram, Cholamandalam, IFFCO Tokyo, Tata AIG etc. All Insurance companies come under the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) which is established to regulate, promote and ensure orderly growth of Life and General insurance industry in India. 



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