Difference Between Ensure and Insure
Insure is generally defined as, taking certain measures or precautions against some unforeseeable negative consequences. That is, insure is a coverage against a specified loss or damage. Though insure can be used for a person, place or thing, it is most commonly used for limited financial liability as in obtaining an insurance policy. Thus, insure is always used in financial context.
- We insured our house against fire and flood damage.
- I found a company that will insure my car for less than I’ve been paying.
- This policy will insure your car against theft.
- She had difficulty finding a company that would insure her.
- They take great care to insure the safety and security of their home.
- We hope that careful planning will insure success.
- He found the language not obscene … but did find it intentionally disruptive, and held that school officials had the right to insure that a high-school assembly proceed in an orderly manner, without hoots and howls and all that snickering. – William Safire, New York Times Magazine, 24 Aug. 1986.
- My new car is not yet insured.
- Our house was insured when the storm hit.
Generally speaking, ‘ensure’ is to be certain of or to make sure or act towards being safe. Keep in mind to use ‘ensure’ whenever you need to suggest guaranteeing something.
- The lifejacket had almost certainly ensured her survival.
- Our new system ensures that everyone gets paid on time.
- They took steps to ensure the safety of the passengers.
- The airline is taking steps to ensure safety on its aircraft.
- The role of the police is to ensure that the law is obeyed.
- Their 2-0 victory today has ensured the Italian team a place in the Cup Final / ensured a place in the Cup Final for the Italian team.
- To ensure there’d be enough food, she ordered twice as much food as last year.
In Modern English
- Now that we understand the origins of the two words, should we use insure or ensure? To define ensure has never been a difficult task. The meaning “to make sure” leaps out from its etymological history, and it can be used in exactly this sense with no variation.
- Regarding insure, the definition is clear concerning its primary meaning – it is the same as ensure. The words can be used interchangeably in this sense. Its secondary meaning, however, “to make sure/protect against damage by financial payments”, stems from cultural developments and not etymological trends.
- The important point is this: if your context demands a word meaning “to make sure”, you can use either ensure or insure. However, if your context demands a word relating to protection against damage by making payments, you can use insure only.
Ensure And Insure
- I told you that we have insured the grounds to ensure that we will be protected in case of a lawsuit stemming from an accident.
- Joe assured his wife that he would insure their home to ensure that earthquake damage would be covered.
- I am telling you that Morgan did ensure that the company will insure both vehicles.
- Please ensure that you insure the building against risks of fire, riots or civil commotion.
- When people want to ensure (make sure) that their valuables are safe, they insure (get insurance) them.
- Please ensure that you remember to insure your car.
- I ensure you that you need to insure your house.
In Common Context
Ensure and insure can sometimes be used interchangeably. The subtle difference between the words is apparent mostly in the American and British English usage.
British English: We wish to ensure the safety of our passengers.
American English: We wish to insure the safety of our passengers.
However, nowadays, in both British and American usage, insure is used to suggest compensation for financial loss. In British English, the meaning of ensure is distinct, i.e. to be certain that something will happen, while in American English, the distinction between the words have almost assimilated.