Filing a business insurance claim can prove incredibly complicated. Making an error during one of the complex steps can be incredibly costly as well as time-consuming. Fortunately, by proactively anticipating certain errors, you can go a long way toward avoiding them when filing a claim.
Mistakes and how to avoid them
Navigating insurance policies, coverage disputes and claims is not always routine for business owners or executives. When it comes to filing a claim, many actions that might feel intuitive can actually do harm. You should take care to avoid common claims errors such as:
- Delayed contact with your insurer
Returning to business operations is the natural instinct after an incident. But this should not lead you to procrastinate filing your claim, even for a few days. Notify your insurance provider of a loss as soon as you can.
- Lack of documentation
You should document everything that has anything to do with your claim. Keep the communications with the claims adjuster. Write down the date and time of phone conversations with insurance representatives or third parties. Dig out your ISO commercial property form and other relevant paperwork to have on hand.
- Failure to consult counsel
Insurance companies do not always offer the full settlement necessary to cover your damages. They are for-profit corporations that try to minimize their expenses. Your counsel should communicate with your insurance provider on your behalf to make sure you do not accidentally admit liability, accept a too-low settlement or sign any documents against your best interest.
- Discarding damaged property
Do not hire a cleanup team to fix on-site damage. Do not throw away damaged merchandise. Until an insurance adjuster has inspected it, take photographs and then leave it.
- Discussing the damage or the claim
It is normal to remain tight-lipped about your company’s goings-on to your competitors. But even among your colleagues, be careful what information, if any, you share about the incident or your claim. Information – and misinformation – that could damage your claim could spread rapidly.
There are so many moving parts to keep in mind when it comes to the business insurance claims process. By using caution and intelligence, you can increase your likelihood of recovering a fair and just settlement for your damage. Avoiding these errors can also prevent a coverage dispute from arising between you and your insurer.