How to Ensure That Your Insurance Claims Were Successful
The chances of filing an insurance claim are relatively high. If you have homeowner’s insurance, the odds are 1.5% you will file a claim this year. And, as automobile owner, it isn’t a matter of if you will file a claim. Did you know that insurance companies expect you to file a claim once every 17 years?
But, regardless of when you file, or what type of claim you report, making sure your claim was successful will depend on following a few key steps.
Buy the Right Policy
No one expects an accident or catastrophe to happen to them so it may be easy to chase lower premiums while unknowingly sacrificing coverage. Unfortunately, when you find out adequate coverage wasn’t in place, it is too late. Take the time to learn about your exposures and the coverage available. You may be surprised superior coverage may very well be within your budget. This is something we can help you figure out.
Beware of Exclusions
Insurance exclusions are unavoidable. Even though endorsements may be purchased to add some coverage back to your policy, or remove exclusions altogether, certain exposures may require a separate insurance policy. For example, flood insurance is rarely included on a homeowner’s policy. This is why working with a professional insurance agent is important.
If an event or accident occurs, and if you are safely able to do so, take photographs of your property or automobile, and the surrounding area. Also, take a moment to write down everything that occurred while the event is fresh in your mind as the information may be critical later in the claims process.
How long you have to file a claim primarily depends on where you live. Further, the type of claim also matters. For example, Rhode Island residents have three years to file a bodily injury claim, yet ten years to file property claims. Irrespective of state laws, it is best practice to file as soon as possible to get the claims process moving and to avoid any issues that the passage of time may create.
Telling the truth at the time of an insurance claim should be common sense. However, accidents and catastrophes are stressful events in anyone’s life and poor decisions can be made. Just remember, falsifying claim information not only can result in declining a claim, but is considered fraud in all 50 states punishable by fines and possible jail time.
Our lives are constantly changing and so do our insurance needs. Let's review your policies on an annual basis. Reviewing your coverage can help avoid gaps in coverage or even save you money by uncovering new discounts. An annual review of your insurance is time well spent.