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Guidelines for Making an Insurance Claim

Most individuals pay their insurance premiums every month for many years and never have to make a claim. The money spent during this time can be considered as “put to good use” as it buys peace of mind knowing that should you need it, the coverage will be there for you. When it is time to file a claim against your insurance policy, there are a few things which you should keep in mind. The procedures for making an insurance claim are pretty much common sense, but often at times they are still overlooked.

The actual act of filing an insurance claim is very simple. In most cases all you have to do is contact your insurance company or broker either by phone or by visiting their local office. If you contact them via telephone, they will probably post, email or fax you a claim form which needs to be completed. Getting the claim filed is generally as simple as getting the completed claim form back to the insurance company or broker. Some insurance policy holders will have online access where they can not only file a claim, but also check the status of a claim which was previously filed. In order to make things go as smoothly as possible, here are a few things for you to keep in mind.

Always remain calm during the process of claiming

Insurance companies may take some time before paying out a claim. Being frantic on the phone or in person with your insurance agent isn't going to help you get your claim settled any faster, in fact it might even slow everything down. If you are not able to remain calm when speaking with your agent, wait until a time when you can.

Make your claim as soon as possible

It is very important to get the settlement process started within a short time frame. While all of the details are fresh in your mind, you will be able to give all of the relevant information to your agent so they can get your claim started as soon as possible.

Have a copy of the police report handy

If there is a police report filed (which there generally should be,) be sure to try to get a copy of it for yourself, or at least have the case number on hand. It would be wise to have a copy for your own records and in case it is needed by the insurance company.

The insurance broker is not the one who will reimburse you

Remember that the insurance broker is not the one who will determine how much you will be reimbursed, they are only the intermediary between you and the company. Getting angry with, or threatening your insurance broker will not help you in any way.

Read your insurance policy

Before you file your claim, grab your insurance policy and read through it as it has probably been a long time since you have actually read it. By knowing what is and what is not covered in your policy, you will be in a much better position to speak with your broker or the agent from the insurance company.

Do not threaten legal action unnecessarily when filing a claim

A mistake some people make when speaking with their insurance agent about a claim, is that they start threatening the company with a lawyer. Always be careful of what you say, do not threaten to open a lawsuit unless you have already spoken with a lawyer and are going to proceed with one.

In conclusion...

Nobody wants to have to file an insurance claim, but sometimes it is unavoidable. If you follow the above tips, you'll find that the experience will be a lot less stressful and the issue will be resolved quickly.


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