Preparing for a claim



Remember that you are responsible for substantiating losses that occur
due to an insurable peril. The key to establishing the value of articles that
have been stolen, lost or damage is to document and inventory your belongings
ahead of time keeping all receipts and storing them in a safe location.


Tips for claims involving theft, injury and damage in your home:


  1. Once you have taken steps to ensure the security of you, your family
    and your home, report the crime to police for investigation.
  2. Obtain the police report and names of all police officers you speak
    with, keeping a copy for yourself and for your insurance company.
  3. Keep a log of conversations with authorities, insurance representatives and anyone else
  4. Create a list with photos and videos if possible of all items that were
    stolen or damaged in your home and provide this list to the police and
    insurance company
  5. Contact your insurance agent or insurance company to report the
    incident and initiate your claim. Do not wait to start your claim.
  6. If your loss is substantial, a claims adjuster will be assigned to
    inspect your property and investigate further.
  7. If needed, make temporary repairs to your property to prevent further
    damage and keep all receipts so you may be reimbursed by your insurance
    company. If you are not able to live in your home and need to relocate during
    repairs, keep receipts as these expanses are normally covered to an extent
    under your policies Loss of use
    coverage limit.
  8. Do not dispose of any damaged items before the police report and
    adjuster’s inspection.
  9. Make your home as safe as possible; injuries can be caused by improper use of tools,
    hazards that cause someone to fall, drowning in a swimming pool, electrical and
    other potential hazards.
  10. If someone is injured on your property, seek treatment immediately. If injury is
    severe, call 911.
  11. In most cases, natural disasters will involve government authorities, local, state
    and/or federal and emergency personnel.  Typically
    a standard policy does not cover damages resulting from earthquakes and certain
    other natural catastrophes.
  12. Always be present when your insurance adjuster inspects your property and if possible have your contractor on site as well.
  13. You will have to determine whether the amount of the loss exceeds your
    policy deductible and by how much in order to assess whether or not to file a
    claim. You will want to consider whether or not filing a claim makes sense.  Making smaller and frequent claims in order to
    get the best possible discounts and rates on your homeowner’s policy. An insurance
    company may cancel your policy or choose not to renew if you make frequent claims
    for minor losses like glass breakage, lost items, etc. Consulting your insurance
    agent may be helpful in making this determination.


Once your claim has been settled, in most cases you can select a contractor yourself to make the needed repairs.





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