Carrier: The insurance company that issues the insurance policy. The term refers to the fact that the company carries (or assumes) certain risks for the policyholder. 
Casualty: Liability or loss resulting from an accident.
Casualty: Liability or loss resulting from an accident.
Catastrophe: A disaster affecting a specific geographic area. Catastrophes often cause injury or even death; most result in extensive property damage. Hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, and even large hailstorms are typical examples of catastrophes.
Certificate of Financial Responsibility: Depending on the state requirement, this is a form certifying that coverage has been purchased to meet the state's Financial Responsibility laws. Such forms include: SR-22, FR-44, SR-50, or any other State form.
Chip Guard: A chip resistant, protective coating normally applied to lower panels to help prevent sharp stones, debris, etc. from chipping the paint finish. 
Chipping: The removal of paint from a vehicle body surface by means of impact of sharp stones, etc. This usually happens on the leading edge of a vehicle body, like on the front edge of a hood, or near the rear edge of a wheel opening.
Claim: Any request or demand for payment under the terms of the insurance policy to cover an incurred loss. 
Claimant: A person who makes an insurance claim.
Claims Adjuster: (same as Adjuster) A person employed by an insurance company that investigates and settles claims. An adjuster evaluates each claim brought by policyholders or claimants and then recommends payment based on the coverage available under the insurance policy.
Clause: A section of an insurance policy that explains, clarifies or defines the conditions of coverage.
Clear or Clear Coat: A coat of clear material (basically paint without the color pigment) applied on top of a color coat as a means of protecting the finish, and adding luster and durability. Usually the color coat and clear coat are applied as a system in a repair to ensure color and luster continuity across the entire vehicle surface.
Coat: A single layer of paint on a surface.
Collateral: Asset (such as a vehicle) pledged to a lender until a loan is repaid. If the borrower defaults, the lender has the legal right to seize the collateral and sell it to pay off the loan. Comprehensive and Collision coverages are required by lenders when a car is the collateral for a loan.
Collision Insurance: Optional coverage for when your car is damaged by a collision with another vehicle or object. Examples of this include a collision with a tree, trashcan or garage door. Collision Insurance may also provide coverage if a car rolls over or if you hit a pothole that severely damages your car. This insurance applies only to your car and doesn’t cover whatever the car collided with – which is covered by property damage liability insurance. It pays for damage to your car (up to the actual cash value of your vehicle, minus your deductible) without regard to who caused an accident.
CollisionLink: Computer software used to digitally connect body shops and car dealers for the purpose of correctly and efficiently ordering collision repair parts.
Commuting: Means that you mainly use the car to drive to and from work or school.
Comparative Negligence: A principle of law that, in some states, may enable claimants to recover a portion of their damages even when they are partially at fault, or negligent. Each party's negligence is compared to the others and a claimant's recovery can be reduced by the percentage of his or her own negligence.
Competitive Estimate or Competitive Bid: The act of acquiring more than one bid for collision repair work. No law requires a consumer to seek more than one bid for collision repair. However, your insurance company may request a competitive bid, especially if you secure a bid from a shop that does not subscribe to that insurance company’s Direct Repair Program. Additionally, if you are paying for the work yourself, and are unfamiliar with shops in your area, you may want to seek competitive bids as collision estimates can vary considerably. When securing competitive bids, be sure to review what each estimate includes (or does not include) regarding labor operations parts used, and type of parts used.
Competitive Parts: (same as Imitation Parts
Compounding: The action of using an abrasive polishing material either by hand or by machine.
Comprehensive Insurance: Optional coverage for when your car is stolen or damaged in ways that don’t involve a collision. Examples include: fire, theft, hail, glass breakage, vandalism, damage from an animal, flood, earthquakes, riot and civil commotion.
Conditions: The portion of the insurance contract which outlines the duties and responsibilities of both the insured and the insurance company.
Contributory Negligence: A principle of law that, in some states, may prevent claimants from recovering any portion of their damages if they are even partially at fault, or negligent.
Corrosion: Degradation of the bare, unprotected metal substrate by oxidation, commonly referred to as rusting. This process is worsened by the introduction of water and salt, which is commonly found on roads in snow-belt areas of the US.  All automotive metal surfaces should be protected from corrosion by some sort of coating.
Counterfeit: A low quality imitation of an original item that is intended to deceive or defraud; not genuine; imitating something superior; something that is intended to be mistaken for an item of higher value or quality. For more information, visit
Coverage: Protection and benefits provided in an insurance policy.