It can be quite complicated and time-consuming when purchasing insurance for yourself and your business. However, it is crucial to do so!
After all, running a business, no matter how big or small is like walking on a tightrope. While thrilling, it comes with its risks, and it can be difficult knowing what risks to take and avoid.
What happens when you come across a risk or accident you didn’t see coming? This is why you need business insurance to reduce those risks for your business to thrive.
If or when your small business experiences loss due to accidents, damage, crime, or liabilities, then insured business owners need to file an insurance claim to cover such losses. The coverage can protect your business against common risk factors, and with various insurance policies you can file a claim against (as needed), it’s a bit confusing to learn.
However, it’s needed, and through understanding the way to file insurance, claims, you can recoup money quickly so you can get back to the usual operations ASAP. Read on to learn more about insurance claims and how to file one.
What to Know About Insurance Claims?
Based on the experts like TradeRisk Public Liability Insurance, here are the things you should know about when it comes to insurance claims:
- What Are Business Insurance Claims?
Before anything else, what are insurance claims?
This is a formal notification one sends to their insurance company, alerting them of loss or damage you suffered, along with a request of compensation for said loss. If the loss is covered by your insurance policy, then the company will cover you for the risks. If your loss is part of the insurance coverage, you need to file a claim.
The insurance provider will investigate your claim once it’s received, and if approved, they will issue payment to you and/or any third-party affected by the claim.
- Filing an Insurance Claim
It’s crucial that business owners are aware of how to file insurance claims properly, as 40% of small businesses would end up filing a claim against their insurance policy. Here are the steps and tips to follow to file an insurance claim correctly:
- It’s best to plan ahead just in case you need to file an insurance claim. While hopefully, you won’t need to use your plan, it’s good to be prepared so you can file claims quickly and accurately. Be aware of what you need to do in case of accidents or disasters, such as taking photos and videos to record the damage, installing surveillance equipment, and also receiving standard reporting forms from your insurance company, and training employees to use such forms.
- After your business experienced something that needs an insurance claim, collect all evidence to send to your insurance company. Take photos of the damage, take note of those present for them to give testimonies or to write down what they witnessed, and take inventory of damaged and missing items.
- If you’ll file a claim related to car accidents, theft, or crimes that occurred on business’ property, call the police and file a report. Insurance companies would require police reports in case of crime or vehicular accidents.
- Contact your insurance agent or broker, informing them about the situation. They will explain the claim process and ask questions regarding the incident you plan to file an insurance claim on. They can also help fill out the insurance claim form to submit to their company.
- After filing your insurance claim, you’ll be assigned to an adjuster after a few days. They will be the ones to investigate your claim, determining how much the insurer’s liability is. They will also require a proof of loss form and supporting evidence, like photos and videos.
- The next thing to do is to get estimates and quotes from the appropriate professionals for repairs to be made. If your building, your company own was damaged from natural disasters, call a contractor to visit and assess the damage, estimating costs of repair. Get at least two estimates, which can help prove your claim.
- Depending on the size of the insurance claim, it may be best to consult a reputable insurance lawyer to receive legal advice. He can help put together the claims documentation, guiding you through the process and resolve any disputes that may arise with the adjuster.
- Consider getting a forensic accountant to assist you in filing documentation for your insurance claim. They can also evaluate the losses accurately, knowing what the insurer needs to cover.
- How Long Do Insurance Claims Take?
This would depend on the complexity of your case, the disputes over the claim, and the state the business is located in. Most states have set timelines mandated by law on how long insurance companies need to pay out a claim. The whole process can take 3 months, more or less.
Wrapping It Up
Insurance claims are important to learn about so you have a smooth process in receiving what you are due in case of any losses. While a bit daunting, you’ll be able to learn more as you go until you are more familiar with what kinds of insurance coverages to get, why it’s needed, and the steps in acquiring them.
I hope that this article on insurance claims helped you learn even more about the ins and outs of business insurance. Do continue learning about insurance and its importance, especially in business, now!
If you have any questions or want to share your knowledge on insurance claims, share them in the comments section below. All your thoughts are much appreciated!