According to a recent study by The Hartford, four out of ten small businesses will experience a property or general liability claim within the next ten years. Knowing which steps to take when an unexpected situation happens, including theft, property damage, and injuries, can save you a lot of headache and time. To get fair resolution of a claim through a more efficient process, prompt response and preparation are required.
Below we’ve detailed the steps that will help you move along the claims process more smoothly.
Before an Incident
Following a risk management plan, including safety procedures, can help prevent a claim from occurring. However, even the most careful businesses can face loss or damages. For this, preparation is important to ensure you’ll be covered financially.
- Review your insurance policies so you know exactly what is covered and if these terms fit your business needs
- In case of a claim, store your insurance policy, including policy number and expiration date, and the contact information of your insurance provider in a safe place
Reporting a Claim
Failure to report theft, property damage, injuries, or other incidents right away drags out the claims process and, if evidence is lost, could compromise how much you’re covered financially.
- Contact law enforcement to file a police report and request a copy of the report
- Contact your insurance company to have a claim filed immediately
- Have a surveillance camera or digital camera readily available for documenting evidence to support your claim
- Make a list of any stolen or damaged items for your insurance company
- For any damages, get multiple estimates for repair costs and confirm with your insurance provider when repairs can be made
After a Claim is Filed
Save all copies of the evidence, police reports, and claim information. When you can, communicate in writing for documentation. After the claim is filed, there are more steps that may need to be taken to get fair resolution.
- If you have a business interruption insurance policy, document the length of time your operations are shut down (e.g., from building fire damage) and income lost during that time period for later compensation
- Ask your insurance provider for a cash advancement if money is needed to get your operations running again before the claim is settled
- Follow up routinely with your insurance provider to keep track of progress
At NIP Group, our dedicated claims expert reviews each claim routinely to ensure they are being handled properly and promptly. Through a customer-focused network, we’ll update you about the status of a claim, assist you with loss control, and work directly with the carrier to get you fair and fast resolution.
To get comprehensive coverage specific to your business risks and responsive claims handling support, check out NIP Group’s commercial insurance programs by visiting http://www.nipgroup.com/programs/.