Insurance claims

When you suffer fire damage or flood damage at home or in the workplace, we all naturally assume that our Insurance Company will be there to ensure everything is taken care of. Statistics show that in most cases people is less than impressed by the response once they have to make a claim. Most just assume that the tasks in hand will be met with the same enthusiasm and vigour as when they took their premium to protect us against the worst.

In reality, an Insurance company is a financial institution. Their priorities are to their shareholders who expect an annual return on their investment. As a result of the well published negative experiences of people making a claim, a whole industry exists to assist people to obtain their maximum entitlement through insurance claim management.

The Claims management or Loss Assessors work for claimant policyholders who have suffered from fire or flood and looking for fire insurance claims or water damage insurance claims. They usually take a small percentage of the settlement but according to the Daily Mail often achieve 30 to 40% more than a person who has little experience of insurance claims would themselves.

The role of a claims manager or loss assessor is to prepare and present the claim in accordance with the policy contract and negotiate a settlement they believe to be the maximum you are entitled to. At the end of the day a loss assessor gets paid on performance and the more they get for you the better their pay check.

The loss adjuster who works for the insurance company is paid to adjust the claim – down. His priority is to the Insurance Company and making savings for them or to even refuse to pay out known as repudiation.

Ideally, you engage a loss Assessor as soon as the incident occurs but often it is only when a person encounters a problem or the claim is repudiated that loss assessors are considered. Some people do not even know they exist.  Most people, however, confuse an insurance adjuster as being the one to help them and expect them to do the work that a loss Assessor would do.

It is not the Loss Adjusters responsibility to assist the public, he is there to assist and report back to Insurers. I suppose an easy analogy would be to ask if you would go to court without a lawyer on your side and try to take on a prosecution lawyer. Of course not so why would you take on an insurance adjuster and his principles the insurance company on your own. Don’t be mistaken into thinking that life experience is the same as competency. You may be excellent in your day to day existence however you will not be an expert in Insurance claims.

I hear of people telling that their insurance broker will help them or their brother in law is an ex-loss adjuster who will help their claim. Both of these are paid and are sympathetic towards the Insurer because that’s their mindset and ultimately who pays the bills. Half the battle in insurance claims management understands the difference in mentalities between saving insurance company money and getting them to spend it.

Remember at the end of the day no one can get you more than your insurance policy allows but they can get what you’re entitled to I stead of what a Loss adjuster hopes to give you.