If someone has become injured on your property or if a violent storm destroys your home, you will need to know how to file a homeowners insurance claim with your carrier. Remember, a homeowners policy is a contract between you and your insurance company. And there are rules and procedures that you and your insurer must follow. Read your insurance policy to see what your responsibilities are.
If you are the victim of a theft or your home has been vandalized or burglarized, report it to the police. Get a police report and the names of all law enforcement officers that you speak with.
Insurance policies place a time limit on filing claims. Find out what the time limit is. Ask questions: Am I covered by my homeowners insurance policy? Does my claim exceed my deductible? (Your deductible is the amount of loss you agree to pay yourself when you buy a policy.) How long will it take to process my claim? Will I need to obtain estimates for repairs to structural damage?
Take reasonable steps to protect your property from further damage. Save receipts for what you spend and submit them to your insurance company for reimbursement.
You are going to need to substantiate your loss. Avoid throwing out damaged items until the adjuster has visited your home. You should also consider photographing or videotaping the damage. Prepare a home inventory, make a copy for your adjuster and supply him or her with copies of receipts from damaged items.
If your home is severely damaged and you need to find other accommodations while repairs are being made, keep records of all additional expenses incurred. Most homeowners insurance policies provide coverage for the “loss of use” of your home.
Once your insurance company has been notified of your claim, the company is required to send you the necessary homeowners insurance claim forms to you by the end of a specified time period. (The time period varies from state to state.) Return the properly filled out forms as soon as possible in order to avoid delays.
Your insurance company will probably arrange for an adjuster to come and inspect your home. Once you and your insurance company agree on the terms of your settlement, state laws require that you be sent payment promptly. In most cases, your claim will be processed quickly. If you have any questions about the claim filing laws in your state, call your insurance agent or your state department of insurance.
County Wide Insurance & RE Agency has been servicing your insurance needs for years. We are built on the principles of providing superior customer service and quality insurance solutions for our customers. As an independent agent, we work with select insurance companies that have proven their performance over the years. We are dedicated to getting you the best insurance products and services available today to protect you, your family, and your business.