How to make a business insurance claim
What should you expect when filing a business insurance claim?
1. Contact broker: It’s important to contact your BrokerLink broker within one business day to report your loss and confirm your coverage. Provide as many details as possible - both the triggering event and any damage to your business, whether physical or financial. Depending on the nature of the loss, you may need to provide inventory numbers, financial records, employee information and a property appraisal. It’s also helpful to provide receipts and photographs for any lost or damaged items.
2. Complete report: Your broker will help you complete a claims (Proof of Loss) report and can submit it to the insurance company on your behalf. Your broker will walk you through the claims process, outlining the coming steps and answering any questions. Once the insurance company receives the report, they will assign you a claims adjuster. This person will review all paperwork and determine the next steps as well as the outcome of your claim. If you choose, your broker can act as a liaison between you and your adjuster. Brokers may assist customers to get in touch with the insurance company and ensure the claim is dealt with in a timely and effective manner.
3. Prove the loss: You will need to review the details of your loss with the adjuster, covering both the reason for your claim and the extent of the damage. For property claims, the adjuster may visit your property to view any damage. You may be required to provide a sworn statement and complete a Proof of Loss form. For any claims involving criminal activity, such as an Employee Dishonesty claim, you must provide a copy of a police report detailing the crime. Your broker may still be involved at this point to advocate on your behalf and ensure the claim is being handled to your satisfaction.
4. Reviews & Disputes: The insurance adjuster will then review all claim information and any necessary paperwork. At this point, they will make a recommendation to the insurance company regarding compensation, whether it is full payment, a partial payment or to deny your claim altogether. This recommendation is passed along to an examiner who will review the claim and make a final decision.
Depending on the severity of the loss, you may need to arrange for a third party to support the Proof of Loss form- this could be a forensic accountant, contractor or appraiser. Disputes are uncommon in business insurance claims since most reputable businesses maintain detailed records and file quarterly statements with the government.
5. Resolving the claim: After reviewing the Proof of Loss form, supporting documents and the recommendation of the adjuster, the examiner will reach a decision regarding the outcome of the claim. If necessary, the insurance company will provide you with a preferred contractor or mechanic for any repairs. You will need to pay any applicable deductibles and the insurance company will then provide compensation. Depending on the nature of your claim, this could include coverage for your employee salaries, loss of sales or inventory, replacement auto or property repairs, and recouping losses due to employee theft. It’s important to note you have two years from the date of loss to complete the claims process.
If at any time during the claims process you would like to contact the insurance company directly, please refer to our list of insurance company phone numbers.