After paying insurance premiums year after year, there is nothing worse than having a claim denied. It’s easy to blame the insurance companies and grumble about the way policy holders are treated. But one of the main reasons for problems in settling claims is that the policy holder has made mistakes either during the tenure of the policy or when making the claim. Whatever the type of policy or the insurance company, there are a few basic actions that the policy holder should take to minimize the possibility of claim settlement problems.
Keep The Insurance Company Informed
The stress of an accident or health issue can easily lead to postpone informing the insurer that you will be making a claim. Informing them as soon as possible can make the settlement much easier. Your insurance company will normally provide you with the claim forms and assist you in filling them out. They may also pre-certify some medical procedures so you do not have coverage issues later on. They may also authorize medical procedures, hotel and ancillary care costs and other expenses so you know where you stand on expenses.
The stress of an accident or injury can throw life out of gear. It is tough but remaining organized can save you from the future insurance hassles. Documentation is vital in this. For example, after a car accident, complete information about the other vehicles and people involved and of all the witnesses will make the processing of the claim much faster. Taking photographs or even videos to illustrate the extent of the damage is always a good idea. In the case of damage to a home, taking steps to prevent further damage like boarding up broken windows will help to establish the actual damage caused and reduce further repair expenses. Taking a detailed inventory of losses including the value, saves a lot of time in making the claim. Keep all the receipts for payments made for replacement and repair costs. This includes everything from hardware to labor, living costs and so on. Having complete records of the expenses you have had to meet will make the settlement process smoother.
Insurance Is For Protection, Not Maintenance
Avoid filing a large number of small home or auto insurance claims. If you do so, your insurance company may increase your rates or even refuse to renew your policies. A simple way to avoid the temptation of making small claims is to go in for high deductibles which will also reduce your insurance costs. In addition ensure that minor repairs are done in time. If a home is known to have a chronic problem of leaking taps that result in mold and water damage, this could cause problems when a claim is made for disaster related damage.
And of course, do not fall behind on your payments. Most companies have a grace period during which they will honor claims even of the payment on the policy has not been made. This is to cater to special circumstances, not to be used to extend the payment date. Putting off payments till the last minute is asking for trouble if the unexpected prevents you from making the payment as you planned.
Know What You Need To Do
You depend on your insurance to protect you and enable you to recover if the unexpected happens. A large part of this burden rests on the insurance companies and they do their best to meet their duties and obligations. As a policy holder it is your responsibility to ensure that your documentation is in order and that you follow the right steps when a claim has to be made. A lot of what you need to know will be contained in the policy document itself. If any issues are not covered or if you have doubts about any aspects of the policy or claim filing procedure, contact your insurance agent and ask for clarifications. At Allied Brokers we make it a point to not just provide our clients with the coverage they need. We provide them with the support they may require when a claim has to be made to ensure that the process is as smooth as possible and it is settled to the policy holder’s satisfaction. To learn more about what Allied Brokers can do for you, visit our website. You can call us at 1-888-505-7988 (toll free) or use the Contact Us page on the site to get all the additional information you may need.