No one wants to make an insurance claim, but when disaster strikes it’s a necessity. It’s important for homeowners to know that there are things they can do to facilitate the claims process and get reimbursed quicker.
Understand the Policy
Insurance policies aren’t as straightforward as people may think. There are covered risks and a wealth of exclusions for which coverage isn’t included. There may also be special deductions for certain instances that are designed to minimize the financial liability to the insurance company.
Failure to make repairs and maintain property can result in a rejection of the claim. Many insurers allow clients to file the paperwork online or upload videos. File a claim ASAP by whatever means the insurer prefers.
Individuals should maintain an itemized list of possessions before they need it for a claim. Keep receipts for every new purchase, from garments to furnishings. Be sure to add new things as they’re purchased. Save the files to a thumb drive or the cloud.
Documentation is essential for insurance companies. Images and/or video of the damage from all sides is critical. This should be done as soon as it’s safe to do so and before the claim adjuster from the insurance company arrives.
Understand that the claims adjuster works for the insurance company. He or she will adhere to the letter of the policy, while minimizing financial responsibility for the insurer. Homeowners should ensure they’re there when the adjuster arrives and to guard what they say. Anything they say will be used in the claims process, often to the detriment of the homeowner. If at all possible, record video of the adjuster’s entire visit.
If the claim still isn’t progressing quickly, the claim is denied, or the insurance company delivers a reimbursement that’s far less than needed, consider hiring a public adjuster. The professionals work only for the homeowner and can negotiate on their behalf for a larger settlement.