Investing in property insurance protects you in the event an unexpected incident, like a fire storm, damages your business, commercial property, or home. Paying the yearly premiums should be all it takes to guarantee a settlement when a claim occurs. Insureds often find themselves in a battle with their carriers to receive enough money to cover all of the expenses of repairing or rebuilding. Not knowing or understanding what coverage you have in place plays a big part in poor claims management.
Here are four tips from the experts at United Public Adjusters:
Understand the insurance carrier’s expectations.
When you purchase commercial property insurance you should receive a copy of the policy. An insurance policy contains coverage details, including what types of losses you have protection against, exclusions to coverage, and conditions or expectations for receiving coverage.
The conditions section defines the carrier’s expectations of you when a claim occurs including documenting, notifying them, protecting surrounding property, and cooperation during the process.
Proper documentation is essential to maximizing your settlement payment. The first step is to gather all the details of your claim including:
- Date the loss occurred
- Type of damage
- Location of the damage
- Current condition of the property
- Description of what is damaged
The second step in properly documenting the claim is to take pictures. We recommend taking as many pictures of the property as possible. Pictures document in real time what the damage looks like and exactly how severe it is.
Mitigation means you will take the necessary steps to protect the rest of your property that didn’t experience damage. To properly mitigate the area, you may need to board up broken doors or windows to prevent theft or make temporary repairs to keep third-parties out of the damaged area.
Hire a public adjuster.
If you fail to document the claim or mitigate the area properly, an insurance carrier has the right to deny your claim per the conditions section of your policy. Hiring a public adjuster alleviates the stress of trying to remember. As experts in claims management, public adjusters know what the insurance carrier expects and can gather the information quickly and efficiently.