Document Type



Final publication in 11 International Encyclopedia of the Social and Behavioral Sciences 7587 (2002)


Insurance may be uniquely tied up with the law. Social insurance and other public sector insurance arrangements are creatures of statute, governed through administrative law. Private sector insurance arrangements depend upon a well-functioning contract law and a regulated market. Insurance thoroughly dominates the field of tort law, especially with respect to the liabilities of individuals and small business. Moreover, because insurance institutions inevitably exert a regulatory force over their subjects, insurance must be understood as a complement to direct state regulation. Finally, some social theorists have argued that insurance has exerted a profound ideological force on law and regulation, as activities increasingly are governed through risk.

Date of Authorship for this Version

January 2002

Included in

Insurance Law Commons