It is the maximum amount of money your insurance will pay for your dental treatment each year. Most insurance will count the year according to the calendar year. In other words, if your plan says maximum of $1500 per calendar year, what it means is it will pay up to $1500 for your dental treatment from January 1 to December 31 of each year. Whether you have used $1500 this year for your dental treatments or you used $0, by January 1st of next year, you will have $1500 maximum coverage all over again for the new year. In other words, what have left unused last year will not be carried over to the new year. Sometimes, your insurance can start in any other month other than January 1. For example, some dental plans for university students often start from September 1st of the year and end by August 31 of the following year. So check with your insurance booklet to make sure.