What is an insurance claim?
The process of formally notifying the insurance service provider about the damages to your property or any other insured item or materials, even death in case of life insurance policy, is considered as an insurance claim.
Filing an insurance claim all by yourself is not always an easy task. Without knowing all the ins and outs, it really can be a tough job for many policyholders.
And there are higher chances that even if you try to deal with the insurance company by yourself, you might not be able to take on the best claim.
Now, the question arises, “ When do you need to make a claim?”
For example, a mishappening strikes you and your property resulting in demolishing your desired home, car, or other belongings. In that case, there is always an option for you to take the money or claim for the damage from your insurance company.
This is only possible if the insurance company already covers your property. So, you need to get yourself good coverage if you want to fight back these mishappenings.
It’s a long-term question among people that, “Is it possible to get your claim from an insurance company just by yourself?”
-The answer is YES!!
However, insurance claims processing is a time-consuming task and you might have to go through a lot to get your desired claim.
No need to get into stress!!
This article is just here to provide you with all the information and guidelines needed to help you make an insurance claim.
Therefore, read till the end to know how to file an insurance claim and get the “Golden Goose” right into your hands.
8 Steps to a Successful Insurance Claim
1. Inform The Insurance Company
When a mishappening strikes your property, the first thing that you need to do is inform the insurance company about all the losses that you have faced so far.
It’s better to call them up directly to their claim phone number or through the web if it’s possible that time. You must strike while the iron is still hot, as there are more procedures you need to follow.
So the earlier you inform, the faster the work is going to wrap up.
2. Pile All The Documents of Your Losses
After you have contacted your insurance company, they ask you for the documents and evidence of your damaged property.
Now, this part of the job is essential. Here, you have to have all the details of the things that were the victims of the calamity. Takedown lots of photographs and also videos (don’t make it too long).
If necessary, write down notes on how much you were injured (only if you were injured) and keep all these compiled in a file.
3. State All Your Future Losses
Don’t feel uncomfortable while stating the losses you will face in the future due to the demolishment of your property.
In the contract you’ll be provided with, write down all the additional damages you will face.
For instance, if you live in Florida, there are higher chances for you to meet devastating storms and hurricanes.
And if the unwanted happens to your property, then in your contract, you’ll state about the pipe leakage that you have to fix, and you’ll also have to clear the drywall, which can end up molds on your walls.
Even if you had suffered any sort of injuries and due to that you won’t be able to go to work, then you’ll also state that in your contract.
In short, craft all the future losses that you’ll be facing due to this devastating outcome.
4. Contact Your Public Adjuster
The fight is not yours any longer. Your public adjuster is right there to help you out of this mess.
Public adjusters are those professionals who will just work on behalf of you rather than the insurance company. Their job is to help you get the best claim from your insurance company.
It will be a headache for you if you don’t have a public adjuster by your side as there are many ins and outs which the public adjusters are well aware of, and you are not!!
So, if you tend to work all alone, then there are higher chances that you will not get your desired claim amount.
An experienced public adjuster knows his job and will do whatever it takes to give you the best outcome.
5. The Inspection of Your Public Adjuster
After you have hired your adjuster, now his initial job is to make a thorough inspection of your demolished property.
This is where his experience will show the actual colors. Here, the public adjuster will take notes on every detail of the belongings that were demolished during the calamity.
He’ll start from your roof and till your basement. The adjuster will make sure that he has all the necessary details, which he can pile up to show the insurance company.
After he’s done with all the details of your demolished property, now he’ll prepare an estimation of your coverage damage.
6. The Proper Estimation of Your Loss
The public adjuster will make the best estimation possible for your claim. But now a tiny suggestion for you.
If you want the best claim, then you also need the best and experienced adjuster on your side. If the adjuster is experienced and professional enough, you don’t need to worry that much as he knows the perfect settlement.
After all, this is done, you have to get yourself a contractor who’ll rebuild your property. When you hire a contractor, make sure that you ask them to be present during the inspection.
7. Your File Review
After all the hectic work is over, your public adjuster will then present the complete file of your estimated claim.
Then the insurance company will give a thorough check on your file to check the accuracy of your demands. If your documents were satisfactory enough, then your insurance company will agree on paying you the claim.
8. The Payment Issued
The insurance company will then send you a copy of the estimated damages and the details of the payment procedure. This can be done in two or more payments.
a) First Payment: ACV (Actual Cash Value)
This is the actual cost of either replacing the damaged item with a similar kind and quality.
In many cases, this might not be an excellent option for many homeowners as there might be even valuable items like portraits, antiques, carpets, and many more. Still, the insurance company will not give you the amount that it took you to buy these items.
In that case, sometimes it’s a loss for the homeowner.
b) Second Payment: RC (Replacement Cost)
If your property already had coverage on replacement cost, then you might get the replaced value.
Now, what is a replacement cost value?
This is the value that your insurance company will pay you, to sum up, the current value of your property that was demolished.
The prices will be similar to the existing value of the market price. So it can be a benefit for many homeowners.
In short, in replacement cost coverage, you’ll be paid the exact amount of your property that it was before getting damaged.
In order to receive this amount, you need the following pieces of evidence:
- An itemized list of invoice
- Photos (or even short videos) of the property
- Other documents and statements for a more detailed claim
- A thorough inspection also needs to be performed.
These are all step-by-step instructions of an insurance claim process that you need to follow to make an effective claim for your property!!