Understanding Automobile Insurance

A Review for Physicians

By Gary A Cook; MSFS, CLU, ChFC, RHU, CFP® CMP™ (Hon)


Like the Home Owners policy, automobile insurance comes in a package (commonly called a Personal Auto Policy, or PAP) containing declarations, forms and endorsements.

These are: Liability Coverage, Medical Payments coverage, Uninsured Motorist coverage, and Coverage for Damage to your auto.

Important Elements

The important elements of automobile coverage are:

  • The vehicle or vehicles is covered, whether owned or leased
  • The insured – the covered driver
  • What is covered?
  • What are the limits of coverage – for both property and liability?


What are the exclusions – for example, the business use of a vehicle may not be covered under the personal policy? Other coverage for example includes a friend driving your car, or, coverage driving a rental vehicle. The medical payments coverage outlines the limits of liability for medical services needed as the result of an accident.


The final area of common personal coverages is the Personal Umbrella Liability Policy. To say that our society has become very litigious may be a gross understatement. The umbrella liability policy transfers the risk of losing substantial assets or future personal income to pay legal obligations resulting from an adverse judgment. The umbrella policy originated to provide risk protection against catastrophic legal claims or judgments. Typically, coverage limits begin at $1 million with upper limits of $10 million, and some unique situations, more. The term “umbrella” arises from the contract language that reflects that the individual carries the appropriate underlying basic coverages (homeowners or automobile) and that this coverage is triggered after the limits of the base contracts are exhausted.

Provided Coverage

An important element of this policy is that coverage provides for protection for the named insured, spouse, and family members living in the household.  This coverage should be very important to those households with teenage drivers.  Organizations may also obtain the protection of an umbrella policy, with certain limitations and exclusions. Unfortunately, “failure to render proper professional services” is very frequently a common exclusion, though some insurance companies will cover this loss exposure with an increased premium.


Other Policies

Other common policies available include: Watercraft and Airplane coverage, Title Insurance, Flood Insurance (offered by very few private insurance companies), Renters Insurance (which covers the contents), and Condominium protection (like homeowners, but has language for common wall risks).

Personal Legal Expense Protection

Finally, there is the issue of the taxation of premiums and claim payments. Premiums for personal property and casualty coverage are not deductible. Therefore, only under unusual circumstances will any benefits received from the coverage be considered taxable income.



However, the benefit payments may be considered capital gain if they happen to exceed the insured’s basis in the property. Uninsured losses are generally deductible under the current Internal Revenue Code.

As usual, specific questions concerning the taxation of premiums or benefits should be directed to your professional advisors.


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Product Details  Product Details

Application Service Provider Primer for Physicians

Understanding ASPs

By Carol S. Miller; RN, MBAbiz-book19

An Application Service Provider (ASP) enables healthcare organizations to run complex software programs or applications on remote servers that can be accessed from numerous sites and by numerous devices. By installing and maintaining central, instead of on-site services, ASPs reduce the complexity, time, resources, hardware requirements, technical support, cost of installing and distributing upgraded software (done by ASP at its host site), and cost involved in application management.  In addition, ASPs provide the physician a means of low cost entry to new applications in a very short timeframe. Upgrades are quickly deployed and healthcare organizations or medical offices can experience affordable and secure business critical applications.  Most ASP services are billed on a per use basis or monthly annual fee. An example of an ASP is NextGen, an Internet based enterprise and a real-time practice management system that includes an electronic medical record, appointment scheduling, connectivity with hand-held solutions and patient indexes.

Reverse ASPs in Healthcare

Healthblocks (www.healthblocks.com) coined the term “reverse ASP” to signify that as an ASP, it provides unique solutions through the Healthblocks eSite, tailored to the situations and circumstances that face healthcare organizations and care givers on a daily basis.  More formally, a reverse ASP deploys through portals, hosts and manages access to medical applications that offices, in a single, seamless manner, can view a patient’s clinical information.  The applications are delivered over networks on a subscription basis and the reverse ASP remotely manages the packaged application over a network. The following benefits are achieved in this model:


  • Hardware/software located on recipient’s facility can connect disparate facilities
  • User names/passwords are located on-site with extensive integration with legacy systems
  • Existing clinical data remains on-site without danger of lost data
  • Connectivity to ASP solutions is not dependent upon an ISP


A reverse ASP model provides physicians, nurses, allied healthcare providers and related personnel with rapid access to confidential clinical patient information. It can also benefit and help extend the reach and usefulness of third-party e-health solutions in a cost-effective manner.



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