A guide to help your business bounce back after a loss
Jun 14, 2016 2 minute read
Insurance claims can be challenging when they affect your business. At times like these where you might be uncertain of how to proceed, you will appreciate speaking to someone knowledgeable about what to do next.
In the event of a business loss, there are several things you should do.
In the event of a property loss
- Prevent injury to employees and patrons. Restrict access to the damaged portion of the premises to prevent any injury to employees or customers. Evacuate if there is structural damage or if you suspect danger until a building expert has deemed it safe.
- Emergency repairs. If you must make emergency repairs, do so. Policy conditions require you to take reasonable steps to prevent further loss. Reimbursement can be negotiated with your insurance company.
Remember: Do not carry out non-emergency repairs until your insurance provider has had the opportunity to examine the damages.
- Contact the authorities. If the claim is a result of criminal activity, contact the authorities to investigate and prepare a police report. Keep a record of the police report number, as the insurance provider will require it to expedite your insurance claim.
- Minimize the damage. Where practical, you should take steps to prevent further loss. This includes removing belongings or property from the building, securing the premises and turning off utilities.
- Gather information:
- Document the damage with photos.
- If there are witnesses, obtain their names and contact information.
- Keep notes about what happened while the event is still fresh in your mind.
- Determine what was damaged or stolen and prepare an itemized list for the adjusters to review. Whenever possible, each item on the list should be supported by an invoice.
- Contact your insurance provider. Once the claim is reported, an insurance adjuster will be your primary contact to assist you in the claims process.
Remember: Do not make any admission, offer, promise or payment in connection with any occurrence or claim. Doing so could negatively impact how your insurance company adjuster handles your claim.
In the event of a liability loss
- Gather information. In the event of a claim against you, record the details of the occurrence, including the names and addresses of those involved, along with any witnesses.
- Report the situation. Contact your BrokerLink broker. With your insurance provider, we will work with you to gather any additional details required.
- Legal counsel. If you are served with any legal papers (i.e. Statement of Claim), contact your Brokerlink broker as soon as possible. Your policy may provide coverage for legal counsel retained on your behalf at no additional cost.
In the event of an automobile loss
- Immediately following an accident, record the following:
- The insurance, registration, name and drivers licence number of those involved (including photos). If anyone involved refuses to provide their information, document the license plate number, vehicle description and driver description before they leave the scene.
- Names and addresses of any witnesses at the scene.
- Details of what happened, including the date, time and location.
- Report the accident:
- Report the incident to the police (in Alberta if damage is greater than $2,000) or a collision reporting centre (in Ontario if damage is greater than $2,000).
- Contact your insurance provider to start your claim. Your BrokerLink broker can help answer any questions you may have.
- Rental vehicle. If your policy covers a rental vehicle, the adjuster will authorize a rental for you. They will also guide you through the process of obtaining estimates, appraisals and repairs.
- Incorporate a loss prevention plan. Check out our loss prevention checklist and see how many your business can check off.
- Familiarize yourself with your policy. Know what your business is covered for and what it is not. Your BrokerLink broker can answer any questions you may have about your business’ coverage.