Businesses are constantly looking for ways to separate themselves from the competition. Obtaining a strong commercial insurance policy provides a security net if a disaster arises. One mistake could jeopardize everything that you have worked for. If your business has suffered a loss, avoid these common errors when filing commercial insurance claims.
- Failing to Carefully Read Over Your Policy
It’s recommended that you read over your commercial insurance policy in its entirety to avoid a misunderstanding. If your business suffers an uncovered loss, that could fold your entire investment. Look over your commercial insurance policy carefully so that you will be able to add extra coverage if necessary. Pay attention to any policy endorsements. Policy endorsements are amendments that you can add for extra protection. Looking over your policy carefully can prevent you from filing a claim with no benefits.
- Failing to Record Damage
A common mistake regarding commercial insurance claims is failing to document damages properly. Your claim will not be successful if you don’t have proof of damage. Submitting the proper damage documentation can help the repairs take place faster. It’s recommended that you take pictures and videos of every damaged area or item. Try to record the date and time of any interactions, as well as copies of emails. If you spoke to an insurance professional on the phone, ask them to provide a transcript so that you can reference it if an issue arises.
- Not Notifying the Authorities
If you are a victim of criminal activity, you should contact the police. Most commercial insurance policies require business owners to file a police report if their property, equipment, or vehicles are vandalized or stolen. The police report is important documentation to assist with filing the claim.
- Delaying the Claims Process
Commercial insurance policies generally require you to file a claim within a specified period after the accident has occurred. Contact your insurer as soon as possible. The faster you get things moving, the quicker your insurer can reimburse you. Waiting too long to file a claim may send a red flag to your insurer. If you delay filing the claim for too long, it may be denied.
- Throwing Away Damaged Property
One of the most overlooked mistakes regarding commercial insurance claims is throwing out damaged items too quickly. It’s recommended that you wait until the insurance adjuster has a chance to look at the damages. Consider covering broken windows, equipment, and other items to prevent further damage from happening. If your commercial vehicles are damaged, it is recommended that you create a record of the damages. That will help the inspection run smoothly.
- Admitting Guilt
If an issue arises involving a client or employee, you do not automatically assume guilt. If the injured party files a claim, admitting that you are liable for the damages impacts the ability of your insurer to defend you. There’s a chance that you could lose the case and be responsible for handling all of the damages. Admitting guilt could also cause your insurance provider to deny the claim and void your policy. It’s recommended that you let the police handle their investigation.
- Failing to Communicate With Your Insurer Properly
Adhering to the claims process can be complex and stressful at times. However, things will run smoothly if you cooperate with the insurance company. Failing to stay on the same page with your insurer could lead to your payments being delayed or your claim being dismissed altogether.
- Not Negotiating
If your property suffers damages, the insurance company will send an adjuster to assess the total value of the loss. You will either be compensated based on the replacement cost or the actual cash value of your items. The estimate should be accurate to ensure that you receive the appropriate amount to cover the repairs or replace equipment. It would be a mistake to accept the adjuster’s numbers simply. If you are concerned that the estimate isn’t accurate, talk to your insurer. In serious cases, you may need to contact the local insurance department.
Consult With Family Financial Insurance Group
Avoiding these common mistakes when filing a claim will prevent delays and help ensure that your business gets back to operating as normal. If you have any questions about your commercial insurance policy, our team here at Family Financial Insurance Group can assist you.