How to file a disaster claim – Filing, Supporting, and completing your claim
Filing a disaster claim can be one of the most frustrating and demanding things to do it is important that before you commence, you have all of the information your insurance company will need from you.
Right before you can file a claim, you must have the following:
- The name of your issuing insurance company
- Your insurance policy number or card
- A customer service line to make the call
Once this is in place, you have to read and understand what your insurance policy says. An insurance policy is a contract between the policyholder and the issuing insurance company. From the policy you can know what is covered, what is excluded and your deductibles.
File the claim immediately:
You will want to file the claim as soon as the incident occurs. Do not delay for any reason. Some insurance policies require you to file a claim within a certain period of time. Once your insurance company receives your claim, they usually have about ten business days to provide you with the necessary claim forms. As soon as you receive these forms, complete them and return them as soon as possible with all the information needed. Incorrect or incomplete information can cause delays in processing your claim.
Response to insurance claims varies from company to company. Some companies can respond within two days, while others within 24 hours, upon reporting your claim. Following the report of a claim, the insurance company will make arrangements for an inspection of the damage to your car, home or business.
After you have filed your claim, and throughout the entire claim process, it is important to:
- Keep a record of the names of every representative you spoke to over the telephone, and date/time of the conversation, and any additional communication exchanges via writing.
- Ask questions to clarify things you do not understand.
- Photograph damaged items and make a list of them.
- Save any receipts used for purchasing materials used for repairs.
- Avoid discarding any damaged property until advised to do so by the claim adjuster.
- Try to protect your property from further damage by making temporary repairs until your insurance company advises otherwise.
- Do not undergo any permanent repairs made until your insurance company has inspected the property, and you have reached an agreement on the cost of repairs. If you do make permanent repairs before the adjuster inspects the damage, your claim may be denied.