Business Owners Claims
What You Should Know About:
Filing a Claim Under Your Business Insurance Policy
Facing a setback in your business because of a loss? Knowing how to file a claim can help you reopen the doors quickly
A fire, burglary, injured customer or damage from a natural disaster can all cause serious setbacks to your business. If a loss does occur, your business insurance policy will help you get or keep your business going.
The first step is knowing what your business owner’s policy covers – so take the time at least once each year to review your policy and your business’ needs with your insurance agent or company.
If you suffer a loss, here are some tips to help speed you through the claims process:
- For crime-related losses, call the police. If the loss is the result of a crime at your business, call the police and obtain a copy of the police report.
- Call your agent or company. Once any immediate onsite emergency has passed, contact your insurance representative as soon as possible. They will help you file your claim.
- Be ready to meet an adjuster. If damage to your business is extensive an adjuster may be sent out immediately to inspect the property. Be prepared for the adjuster to also examine books and records.
- Take photos and find/keep records. When it’s safe to do so, document damage to your property. Prepare an inventory of damaged or destroyed items to give to the adjuster along with any copies of receipts. Make a list of everything you want to show the adjuster and consider taking photos or video of the damage.
- Sign “Proof of Loss” documents. You will be asked to send a signed and sworn proof of loss document that typically must be done within 60 days after the insurer’s request. Keep copies of these records and any correspondence with your insurer.
- Make temporary repairs if possible, save repair receipts. Take reasonable and safe steps to protect your property from further damage by making temporary repairs. Save receipts to submit to your insurance company for reimbursement. Any payments for temporary repairs are part of the total settlement.
- You may be covered for relocation. If your business was forced to close or relocate, file a business income and extra expense claim if you carry Business Interruption Insurance. (link to business-owners-policy page)
- Did we mention keep copies of everything? Keep copies of all documents that you submit to your company along with any paperwork your insurance company gives you. Also, record the names and phone numbers of everyone you are in contact with during the claims process.
Some information provided by the Insurance Information Institute and Insurance Institute