Certificate of Insurance vs. Evidence of Insurance

I’m trying to find out if there is any difference between a Certificate of Insurance and evidence of insurance. This has never been a thought or issue to me until today.

Someone I’m subbing work to sent me a page from his policy merely stating he is covered for a particular year period. My wife noticed that it doesn’t specify the amount or any other breakdown. Just the coverage period and carrier.
He would prefer that I am not a ‘certificate holder’ for various personal reasons.

My basic question is : Is there legal basis for that stance? This is a completely new objection and I’m not particularly comfortable with what we have from him right now. But if mere proof without any of the typical details is enough, I may need to readjust my thinking.

Thank you.

Don’t know if there is a difference , but I would tell him you need a certificate of insurance emailed from his insurance provider . That shouldn’t be so difficult for anyone who has insurance

You wouldn’t think, would you Mike?
I tried this after he scanned and emailed what he did and this met with resistance.

Then he doesn’t have insurance he is lying .

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Well, the cover sheet indicated he is covered until July of this year. We simply feel pretty certain we need more. Our tax-preparer is certain of this as well.



i cut almost all my subs but when I request it we only accept it directly from their agent.

Its not like you can accomplish anything by being a certificate holder. I can show you a paper that says that I’m covered until next year, doesn’t mean I didn’t pay my bill this month and get dropped.

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Not only should you get a coi directly from the agent, but when they do, contact the agent directly and ask if they cover him for what you are requesting of him. Doesn’t do any good if he’s covered for a million for power washing and you want him to clean windows. A coi only shows the amount and who the provider is

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You’re providing the work here, Dan, so you get to set the rules. You’re not asking for too much, only what every contractor asks for. You’re being too nice. :cool:

I know I hold the aces.
I simply wanted to confirm what all mine and my wife’s research suggested- that a contractor needs not just some generic proof of insurance, but an actual certificate.

Thanks for the replies, everyone.


I would think you would want to be listed as additional insured for your protection. If you were listed the insurance company would send you a certificate stating such and they would also send you a notification if he dropped his insurance.

Well, it was a spur-of-the-moment situation. It turns out that the company who contracted the job out to me is just going to pay me and the uncooperative other party our shares of the completed job. That’s fine with me. If they’re okay with incomplete information, that’s their business. There’s quite a back story with all this, but it’s not pertinent to this thread.