Written by Joe Pavlik, Senior Account Manager/Sales Advisor
If the last few years have taught us anything from the insurance industry, it’s to have a better understanding of emergency preparedness and insurance claims. We have all seen the unprecedented financial effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, wildfires, hurricanes, floods, snowstorms—and the list goes on!
An insurance policy is purchased to protect your material possessions, financial stability, and, most importantly, your peace of mind. Our role is to assist you with determining proper coverage for your insurance needs and providing advice and resources to mitigate risks.
As a seasoned claims handler with extensive personal and commercial claims experience, I believe a claim is what sets the insurance experience apart. Customer service, current insurance reviews, and communication can all help factor into a customer’s claim experience. While no one in the industry wants a claim to occur; we do want to make sure you have a clear understanding of the claims process and ensure your claim is being handled immediately, in order to get a fair and timely claim settlement.
Here is a real-life example of a $1,000,000+ claim:
A well-known local contractor had a fire at their warehouse during the night. The fire smoldered through the night and was still burning the following day. Unfortunately, the building had to be knocked down to contain the fire. The building was declared a total loss and was uninhabitable after the fire.
The agency was notified immediately when the insured discovered the fire. Experts were brought in to determine the cause. The insured’s insurance policy was reviewed and updated the previous year before the fire occurred. The adjuster and agent were on the scene that day and helped carry paper files out of the building so records could be saved. A trailer was used to set up temporary offices at the insured’s location so the insured did not have a business income loss. The agent from Perry & Carroll and the adjuster helped explain the coverages to the insured so he was comfortable during the process.
This loss was inspected, investigated, evaluated, and paid within several months of the fire. The insured was satisfied with how the process was handled even though a catastrophic event occurred. Luckily, his business operations were not impacted severely due to the claims-handling process.
Some key points to remember when filing a claim:
Since every claim scenario is different and costs are not always known at the beginning of a claim cycle, make sure to contact your agent so they can walk you through when an insurance claim should be filed. In order to make sure you are meeting the insurance carrier’s guidelines; you should alert your agent as soon as the claim details are known to make sure you do not jeopardize insurance coverage. Often, the insurance agent can recommend the best and quickest remedy for the situation or recommend if an expert is needed (even if a claim does not need to be submitted).
It is important to include any documentation such as photos of damages, accident scenes, police reports, and names of contractors/witness information. Also be sure to save any receipts and any claim-related documentation from the date of the loss. Often, the agent can make recommendations in the industry and help maximize your time and efforts spent during the claims process.
If an insurance claim occurs, remember to gather the 4 Ws:
- Who was involved?
- What happened?
- Where did the loss occur?
- When did the loss occur?
At Perry & Carroll, we have a dedicated service team and a claims expert to assist with claims management and ensure adequate coverages to properly protect you in the event of a claim. Give us a call today with any questions you may have.